After several complicated seasons at Tourbillon, the sports director of the Valais club evokes the need to start a new era. Goalkeeper Lindner on final approach.
What season 2022-2023 does FC Sion aspire to? When we asked him the question on Wednesday on the terrace of the Porte d’Octodure, in Martigny-Croix, Barthélémy Constantin did not hesitate long before answering us tit for tat. “After complicated years, we just want to have a peaceful season. The objective is to get a place in the first part of the table and bring the Cup back to Valais.
No bravado, just the need to relive more intense emotions. “I’m not here to dangle impossible things. Let’s not forget where we come from. That said, whatever we can take in addition, we will not hesitate to take it…”
The sports director of Tourbillon also knows this, which will above all suppose a different attitude than that which weighed down the previous exercise, mainly this spring. “We will have to see another FC Sion at work,” he confirms.
A squad of 23 players
To achieve this ambitious goal, there is the need to bring about change. “There will still be movement…” But before enlisting, it is important to continue to degrease. “We still have to find solutions for three elements. The basic idea is that we can work with 18 players, 2 young people and 3 goalkeepers.
During the discussion, Barthélemy Constantin confirms the need for a change of No 1 between the Valais posts, which should put an end to the long era of Kevin Fickentscher. Having become undesirable at FC Basel where he is still under contract, Heinz Lindner (31) is expected to succeed him.
Long blocked due to the exaggerated financial claims of the Rhineland leaders – an amount of 500,000 francs was even articulated without it being known whether it corresponds to reality – the file has made spectacular progress in recent days. “We have returned to more normality with Basel, agrees our interlocutor. But we are still discussing…” While the Austrian goalkeeper is finishing his holidays in Sardinia, his arrival at Tourbillon should be effective by Monday.
Other reinforcements are still expected, especially in central defense and offensively. Very little used since he signed in Valais last summer, Joël Schmied (ex-Vaduz) is entitled to claim a starting place in the axis after the departures of Birama Ndoye and Jean Ruiz. “Joël deserves to have his chance, his potential is more than interesting, believes his sports director. In terms of his state of mind, his attitude has always been exemplary.
Held 1-1 by Xamax this same Wednesday in Ayent, Sion, who will play his second preparation match on Saturday against Servette (4 p.m. in Lens), was able to measure everything that separates him from what he aspires to.