FC Nantes Tryouts & Club Guide: History, Stadium, Players, and More!

Explore the ultimate FC Nantes guide! Dive into detailed tryout processes, rich club history, iconic stadium tours, and profiles of players. Your comprehensive source for all things FC Nantes, for aspiring talents to seasoned fans.


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Football Club de Nantes Atlantique, commonly referred to as FC Nantes or simply Nantes, is a French professional football club based in Nantes in Pays de la Loire, France. The club competes in Ligue 1, the top flight of French football.

FC Nantes Youth Development System


In the green setting of La Jonelière, on the banks of the Erdre and fifteen minutes from the heart of the city, the FC Nantes training center is among the best in Europe . Since its opening in September 1978, it has allowed several generations of players to join the ranks of the Nantes professional group (22 out of 27 came from it during the 2000/2001 season). Many of them have successfully attempted international careers. Among which three became world champions in 1998 and European champions in July 2000: Marcel Desailly, Christian Karembeu and the current coach of the Blues Didier Deschamps for whom his Nantes achievements partly explain his success:“I will be eternally grateful to this club for everything it has brought me, at all levels, in learning my profession , he admits. I know that FC Nantes instilled all the basics in me necessary, mentally, physically and technically. “

Since José Arribas (who gave his name to the facilities), coach under whose leadership FC Nantes rose to the first division in 1963, success has always been built around young, promising talent, brought to maturity by patient educators. , like the Nantes de “Coco” Suaudeau champion in 1995 and that of Raynald Denoueix, champion in 2001.

Thus, in forty years, FC Nantes has accumulated undeniable experience and recognized know-how perpetuated by educators from the “Yellow House” . Equipped with a modern and efficient tool for teaching football, it does not neglect the school curriculum thanks to the CENS (Center Educatif Nantais pour les Sportifs) , an independent secondary establishment which provides à la carte education, in classes with numbers reduced and with a success rate close to 100% in the General Baccalaureate


Detection is carried out on a national level thanks to a recruitment unit which surveys the sites every weekend . If the origin is hexagonal or even international, the training center retains its attachment to the West. Landreau, Toulalan, Fae, Veretout, Dubois, Rongier, Djidji … as well as those who currently belong to the professional group (Touré, Louza, Youan, Dabo, Mendy, Dupé) are thus from the Loire or nearby countries. Brittany, as well as 50% of the residents of the training center.

From the age of 15, the academy welcomes around sixty players in training each season for 4 teams (U16 Elite, U17 national, U19 National and Reserve) and for the youngest the system is preceded by two years in the elite section.


The Elite Section was created in 1997. It brings together forty young people forming the U14 and U15 groups. She wants to be as regional as possible in her recruitment.
Based on the same site as the training center, lessons are given at the “Saint-Donatien” college located 10 minutes from the center of Jonelière.
The school offers flexible hours to allow young people to have daily training from 4.30 p.m. to 6.30 p.m. as well as weekly tutoring.
A boarding school can accommodate the most distant from the Region. At the end of this adaptation period, the club’s objective is to integrate a majority of these young people into the training center. On average, 50% of these young people over the last few years have joined the training center.


Monday9 a.m. – 12 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. – 4 p.m.4.30 p.m. – 6.30 p.m.
Tuesday8 a.m. – 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. – 4 p.m.10:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
Wednesday8 a.m. – 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. – 4 p.m.10:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
Thursday8 a.m. – 1 p.m.3:30 p.m.
Friday8 a.m. – 1 p.m.3:30 p.m.
SaturdayPreparation and match
SundayPreparation and match


The center in figures

  • Recognized as the leading French training center in 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 and 2002 by the results of its youth teams and the number of internationals by age group
  • 14 hectares of facilities and playgrounds including two grass fields, two latest generation synthetic turf, two latest generation synthetic turf pits, a weight room and a spa.
  • 60 young people on average per season
  • 12 to 15 new players per season
  • 50% of the center’s players come from the Pays de la Loire on average
  • 12 internationals in 2018/2019
  • 3 World champions in 98 and European champions in 2000 with the A: Didier Deschamps, Marcel Desailly and Christian Karembeu
  • 3 U17 world champions in 2001: Emerse Fae, Luidji Glombard and Stephen Drouin
  • 3 European U17 champions in 2004: Jean-Christophe Cesto, Steven Thicot and Karim El Mourabet
  • 2 U20 World Champions in 2013: Jordan Veretout and Maxime Dupe
  • 3 European U19 champions in 2016: Amine Harit, Enock Kwateng and Quentin Braat
  • 4 teams: National 2, U19 National, U17 National and U16 Elite
  • Youth teams (excluding training): 1 elite U15 team, 1 elite U14 team for the Elite Section and 11 teams at the football school with 110 players

Academy Recruitment Staff

Recruitment is an important component of the training center. In a very competitive context, it is essential to work on a daily basis at La Jonelière with young players with high potential.

“Our team is made up of 10 recruiters based in targeted regions in a thoughtful way.
When we observe a young player, our eye obviously first focuses on his sporting potential. The idea then is to go further than the field because we are looking more than anything humanly reliable players and therefore balanced.Our
mission is therefore also to analyze the environment of the player in all its components.These elements are an integral part of our decision-making.

Recruitment Staff (scouts)

A very good player is not just a very good footballer. We are convinced that the success of our young people is played out in many areas off the field.
The young must be armed in a holistic way because the road leading to professional football is a long road strewn with pitfalls.

During his training, the young player spent 6 and a half days out of 7 at La Jonelière for many years. We must therefore know the footballer well, but also the student, the comrade, the partner or the competitor …

Our strength lies in our common past and our mutual trust. Our network within our youth recruitment unit is solid and coherent. Thanks to him, we are able to stay the course in a highly competitive environment. “


The goal of the football school is for the child to have fun, progress and develop through football. Through the structure and educators, he will discover, learn and respect the rules of life and the rules of the game. To sum up, the objective of the football school is to develop knowledge (Rules of life and skills), interpersonal skills (Education) and children’s skills (Football).

At the end of the football school, the objective will then be to prepare the players for entry into pre-training (U14-U15).

Today, more than 80% of the pre-training workforce of FC Nantes come directly from the football school.

Characteristics :

  • 74 licensees for the 2020 season | 2021
  • Location: Jonelière Playground
  • Categories: U6 to U13
  • 1 U8-U9 team
  • 2 U10-U11 teams
  • 2 U12-U13 teams
  • Five-a-side or six-a-side football for the U8-U9 category
  • 8-a-side football for the U10-U11 categories
  • 8-a-side and 9-a-side football for the U12 category
  • 9-a-side and 11-a-side football for U13 categories
  • Supervision: 13 qualified educators including a goalkeeper coach

Players from the Football School:

  • Imran Louza (professional midfielder of FC Nantes and International Espoirs Français)
  • Elie Youan (professional striker of FC Nantes)
  • Valentin Rongier (ex-professional midfielder of FC Nantes)
  • Abdoulaye Touré (professional midfielder of FC Nantes)
  • Jordan Vérétout (FC Nantes player until 2015)
  • Marcel Desailly (1998 World Champion)
  • Jérémy Toulalan (French international)



“Participate in the associative life of the club”

  • Welcome a large number of young players
  • Maintain a club identity (yellow and green outfit, etc.)
  • Offer quality facilities (changing rooms, grounds, reception, etc.)
  • Develop associative actions
    • Operation “football city”
    • Goalkeeper development center
    • Holiday mini-courses
  • Volunteer help for the club’s associative life

“Train educated children”

  • Respect of the club’s internal regulations
  • Implementation of various charters to be respected:
    • Charters for players, parents and educators …
  • Well-defined roles for each member of the football school:
    • Managers, leaders, educators and category referents …
  • Implementation of educational actions:
    • Participation in the federal educational program
    • Fair play quiz
    • Laws of the game
    • Arbitration of players during matches …

“Train good players”

  • Offer quality supervision:
    • Qualified educators, with at least one BEF educator in each category
    • 2 qualified educators per team
  • Offer a sufficient number of training sessions for player progression:
    • 2 to 3 sessions per week for each category
  • Offer quality training sessions:
    • Sessions from 1h30 to 2h with 10-15 players for 2 educators
    • Content adapted according to age categories
    • A specificity in the work (Specific goalkeeper, work with the physical trainer, technical work, tactics with the coaches …)
  • Follow up on players in training, in matches:
    • technical, physical, statistical tests, interviews with the player and the parents …
  • Continue training our educators:
    • Participation of our educators in CFF1, CFF2, BMF, BEF… training offered by the district.
  • Participate in competitions organized by the district, by other clubs or by FC Nantes:
    • Championships, Cups / Challenges, Tournaments, Meetings, Urban, Futsal, Festi-foot…


Recognized on several occasions as one of the best sites in France, the Jonelière Training Center is renowned for the quality of its infrastructure. La Jonelière continues to train young people who, tomorrow, will have the opportunity to succeed their illustrious elders such as Didier Deschamps, Marcel Desailly and more recently Imran Louza, Elie Youan, Jordan Vérétout, Anthony Walongwa, Jérémy Toulalan, Valentin Rongier.

Characteristics :

  • Reception at the Jonelière Playground
  • Club-House with bar & meeting room
  • Renovated changing rooms
  • Latest generation synthetic surfaces


Distribution of players:

  • 1 elite U8-U9 team in friendly matches against U9 pros or U10 amateurs
  • 1 elite U10 team in U11 level 10 grids
  • 1 elite U11 team in friendly matches against U11 pros or U12 amateur clubs
  • 1 elite U12 team entered in the elite U13 championship
  • 1 elite U13 team entered in the U13 regional championship


To register or learn more about joining the football school, please click here to navigate to their official registration page.


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FC Nantes History

The club is well-known for its “Nantes-style play,” also known as its “juge à la nantaise,” its “collective spirit,” which was primarily advocated under coaches José Arribas, Jean-Claude Suaudeau, and Raynald Denoueix, and for its youth program, which has produced players such as Marcel Desailly, Didier Deschamps, Mickael Landreau, Claude Makélélé, Christian Karembe Nantes is also known as Les jaunes et verts (The Green and Yellows) and La Maison Jaune in addition to its more well-known name, Les Canaris (The Canaries) (The Yellow House).


Nantes, France is home to a stadium that is officially named the Stade de la Beaujoire – Louis Fonteneau but is more commonly referred to simply as the Stade de la Beaujoire. The French football club FC Nantes calls this their home stadium.

On May 8, 1984, the stadium officially opened its doors for the first time by hosting a friendly match between FC Nantes and Romania. Louis Fonteneau, who served as president of FC Nantes from 1969 to 1986, is honored with the naming of this venue. In preparation for the 1998 FIFA World Cup, it underwent a makeover in 1998. It had a capacity of 52,923 when it first opened, but in 1998 it was transformed into an all-seater stadium, and now it only has a capacity of 38,128. The club once played its home games at Stade Marcel Saupin.



Waldemar Kita is a Polish businessman who is worth a million dollars and lives in France. He was born in Szczecin, Poland, in 1953. Kita is a devoted follower of football, and in 1998 he purchased the Swiss club FC Lausanne-Sport. He served as chairman of the club from the time he purchased it until 2001, when he sold it again. After that, in 2007, he purchased the Ligue 1 club FC Nantes, which had won eight national titles in French football. According to reports, Kita paid approximately 10 million euros to purchase the struggling financially club at the time. Since then, he has served as the club’s chairman continuously.