OL's keeper is going into the season focusing on the ambitions of the club...all the while knowing that if the club is successful, it will help his own ambitions...
What about the goals conceded from set pieces ? « They were just moments where a little something went wrong, it’s not that important. There have been some good signs, with a desire to strengthen to collective and build a style of play of our own. If we want to do well this season, we have to do so as a squad . The ingredients are there, we are not lacking anything defensively. It’s up to the coach to make his choices. I get on well with everyone, on and off the field ».
The squad is now deprived of Juninho and Benzema. « We have lost two great individuals, but some high calibre replacements have been brought in; our left flank has also been reinforced. The danger can come from anywhere . All through pre-season we have been working on our defensive and offensive plays. Competition will let us know where we really are ». A league competition which kicks off this weekend with a match away to Le Mans. A league which seems promised to one of Bordeaux, OM or OL. Hugo agrees with some reservations. «As far as the squads are concerned, these three sides would appear to have a headstart. But I believe that the competition will be open. It will be very interesting and their are always some surprises. The French League is better off for the arrival of some high quality players. Afterwards, truth will out on the pitch ».
OL will start their campaign away to Le Mans. Do they have any other alternative but a win ? « We have to start well and put in a good month of August. Against Le Mans, we have to show how we intend to go on, by winning. Afterwards…. There is the preliminary round of the Champions League. I really can’t wait for that. This type of match is always interesting to play in despite the pressure. It doesn’t matter who the opponents are, that doesn’t change anything. These matches are often difficult to negociate ».
It’s all OL for Hugo, but he does have some personal ambitions. «I am always looking to improve my game, I always want to get better and better. I’m feeling good after the throat infection which kept me out for a week. I’m itching for the competitive matches to start. My ambitions? To win trophies with OL, our priority will obviously be the league but we mustn’t neglect the Champions League, we have to get through the preliminary round. After that, I’ve never waited for anyone to hand me something on a plate . It’s up to me to do what is necessary on the pitch. Coaches make their own minds up. It’s not because the World Cup is at the end of the season that I will be changing the way I approach the competition. I’ll say it again: personal objectives are secondary to those of the club, of the collective. What interests me? Seeing OL do well … and if the club is performing well then I will have no worries ».