CORREA: EVIAN ARE NOT THUGS
Evian boss Pablo Correa has hit out at claims his side behaved like thugs during the mass brawl that marred their Ligue 1 draw at Montpellier.
Correa accepted this week's decision to hand a four-match ban to defender Cedric Mongongu and a two-match suspension to striker Saber Khelifa for their part in the ugly fracas at the end of their May 1 clash at the Stade de la Mosson.
Both players had already sat out the last two games, meaning Khelifa returns for Sunday night's penultimate match of the season at Nice, while Mongongu's campaign is now over.
Correa told reporters at a press conference: "I do not comment on sanctions because it can turn against you very quickly. But I accept it.
"However, I find it hard to accept that one says we were at fault or look like a team of thugs."
Khelifa's return and those of Kevin Berigaud and Adrien Thomasson will help bolster an Evian side who will play for the second time in four days on Sunday.
"The legs are heavy, it's inevitable," Correa added ahead of what is a largely meaningless game for his players at the end of their first ever Ligue 1 season.
Nice, meanwhile, need a victory to be certain of preserving their own top-flight status.
Rene Marsiglia's men have also had three days more to prepare than Sunday's opponents after Monday's goalless draw with Toulouse, which ended a run of two defeats that threatened to see them sucked into the drop zone.
Correa said: "Coming out of the match against Toulouse, Nice said they were finishing the job against Evian.
"This is quite normal that they think that. And it is quite normal for me I think we go over there to win."
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