The flagship rookie. Arriving from Toulon this summer, Louis Carbonel officially started with the MHR this Monday, August 8. For the first time since he packed his bags at Hérault, the promising starting half (23) lived up to this new challenge and his final months in Toulon.
Louis Carbonel stamped with the Montpellier logo, screams. He, the prince of Rade, of red and black blood, set sail this summer towards new horizons by signing with the MHR. A departure that unleashed the wrath of Toulon supporters, stunned to see how the RCT management let their beloved go.
But the Var club’s chaotic start to last season forced president Bernard Lemaitre to part ways with Patrice Collazo at the end of October. An event that upset the team and the future of some players including Louis Carbonel. In the shadows, Montpellier sporting director Philippe Saint-André then investigated the international midfielder’s record (4 games) and signed him for the next three seasons. nice shot Interview at the new inauguration of the MHR.
Carbonel at the MHR: “I worked there for three and a half months,” explains Saint-André behind the transfer.
Louis, did you learn the words to “Oh Firecracker” before you arrived?
I already knew a little about them thanks to Arthur… But that’s okay, they’re easy.
How does it feel to wear something other than red and black?
It’s true that seeing yourself in the mirror all blue is a bit strange. But it’s okay, it’s also not… (smiles)
New logo, new city… Can you get your bearings?
I’m in the middle of the acclimatization phase. Either with the group or with club life. It’s a new life with new habits, I want to integrate as quickly as possible. I look forward to it.
Your signing at Montpellier was a surprise at the time, as you were still under contract with Toulon. Can you tell us what happened, your version?
(Pauses) No, I won’t say it, it’s no use starting a controversy, rumors or anything. There are so many things that happened, that were said at the club last year because we were in a complicated period. We all learned. My version, I could tell you, but it has no interest. Many know the story of Toulon thanks to the support I had at the end of last year. Now I’m ready to turn the page and can’t wait to discover a context I don’t know.
Was leaving home the most difficult decision of your career?
It was difficult in the sense that I didn’t believe it at first. I was still under contract with Toulon, so I didn’t think about leaving this year. In the end, it went something like this. Things happened and Montpellier’s opportunity presented itself.
I want to (talk) but it’s useless. Things should stay in the club
You ended last season in a cannonball, so we imagine that the exit must not have been easy…
Clearly we have maintained an impressive winning streak (16 out of 22 games). I had a lot of friends in that band and leaving them on such a note, I think maybe there was better to do. But that’s part of learning.
Your departure caused an uproar from Toulon supporters, who even launched petitions for you to stay. Have you been touched by this enthusiasm around you?
It’s definitely fun. This last game against Pau (Carbonel scored a try in front of his home crowd for der a Félix-Mayol) showed that Toulon was a small rugby town. Everyone knows the stories of the club. I wanted to give back to the fans what they gave me. I would have preferred to leave them with something, a title, but that’s the way it is, this is sport. I said I’ll talk to the supporters, I’ll tell them things, but it’s no use.
Want to keep it all to yourself?
I want to (talk) but it’s useless. Things should stay in the club. Everything that happened, I absorbed it as a strength and it served me for the end of the season. Now we have to talk about Montpellier.
Step out of your comfort zone, do you take it as a challenge?
I didn’t know when I would leave my career. But getting out of the house is always beneficial. You face social life on your own. He can only do good. I am happy to experience this.
Has the presence of Arthur Vincent, with whom you have worked since the France U16 national team, motivated you?
For sure. I have already seen the quality of the Montpellier squad where I have some friends. I didn’t see it, but it’s always nice to have them with you.
You are not so far from Toulon, the short distance played in your decision?
no no Then opportunities presented themselves. I wanted to find the best club to progress and I hope to find it here.
It is true that we have a certain image outside the club. But when you’re inside, the environment is great, it’s just positive.
Competition for your position will be high in Montpellier with Paolo Garbisi and Louis Foursans.
It’s a real challenge for me. Paolo and Louis have done very nice things. It can only make us progress. We will take it physically or in skills. I’m going to take a little bit of each to progress as much as possible.
Playing with Léo Coly and Arthur Vincent, your fellow U20 World Champions in 2019, what does that mean to you?
The wink is nice. When you play with players you have a particular affinity with, it’s easier and goes faster.
Finding the France team is a goal?
Frankly, I don’t care. My first ambition is to perform at my club, to help the team, especially when everything is new.
Arriving at a French champion club forces you to set the bar high.
(Smiles) Ah, I have to raise all the standards, they will wait for me. But it’s good for the club, I’m happy for them. We are all focused on having a good season even though we know it will be tough.
When you signed, MHR were not yet champions of France and were struggling to break out of their South African image. Has this reputation not played a role in your choice?
No way. Already the staff, for 3-4 years, renews the staff a lot and wants to deconstruct this image. The test, two friends of mine who are U20 world champions play in this club and many French people are present. It is true that we have a certain image outside the club. But when you’re inside, the environment is great, it’s just positive.
– Born on February 4, 1999.
– Cut down : 1.80.
– weight : 82 kg.
– clubs : Toulon (2017-2022), Montpellier (from 2022).
– Awards : double under-20 world champion (2018, 2019), minimum French champion, Crabos and hopes.
– selections : 4.
– Son of Alain Carbonel, former center of the RCT.