Claudio Ranieri has a new job: repeat the Leicester City miracle at Nantes

When Sergio Conceição swapped Nantes for Porto, the French club needed to replace him with a manager with a big aura. They chose the Tinkerman

By Adam White for Get French Football News, of the Guardian Sport Network

“Stupefied” was how Nantes president Waldemar Kita described himself upon learning that his club’s manager, Sergio Conceição, wanted to leave this summer. Kita’s surprise was warranted; Conceição had been at the club for just six months – time enough for him to quietly instigate a revolution – and he had signed a new three-year contract just days before.

Conceição had taken over last December after René Girard’s limp stewardship of the club had come to an end after a 6-0 defeat at home to Lyon. They were second from bottom, facing a relegation scuffle and barely treading water until Conceição took over. He ramped up the intensity in the squad, moulded them into an aggressive, attacking outfit and dragged them to an outstanding seventh-place finish with the air of a parent who was furious to discover his children had been misbehaving at school.

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