The charm of the Coupe de France often lies in this singular ability to propel unexpected heroes into full light. On Saturday, Alan Dzabana, a 23-year-old center-forward with a small stature (1.71 m) became that of the Red Star by scoring the goal of the qualification for the round of 16 in the 90th minute against Lens (3-2) . “When I came in, there was a quarter of an hour left. I said to myself, I must send everything and on my typing, I did not ask myself any questions, says Dzabana. Afterwards, everyone who falls on me, the collective joy, the locker room, sharing with the supporters almost as before the pandemic, it’s indescribable… ”
On the bench, he had had a hunch. “During the match, I was like, I’m going to come home and I’m going to score,” he continues. Thursday, we had a sophrology session with the mental trainer. We worked on the theme: how to get in and be decisive in a short period of time. It’s visualization, it allows you to approach matches with more confidence. I was mentally prepared to break everything. These sessions, I had never experienced this before, it boosts. “
“In Le Havre, instead of progressing, I stagnated then regressed”
Arrived at the beginning of February at the Red Star, Dzabana, who grew up in Livry-Gargan, then moved to Torcy, was an ex-hope almost forgotten a few weeks ago. In Le Havre, joined in January 2018 from Lyon for more than 1 million euros, he was a huge flop with only 11 L2 games in 3 years. At OL, however, he was among the most promising players of his generation. With in particular Houssem Aouar, he was of the champion team of France U17 in 2014 at the expense of PSG (with Ikoné, Nkunku, Augustin, Edouard…). Bruno Genesio had then also called him several times in the group in L1 even if he never came into play. He was, then, followed by clubs like Nice and his entourage also looked towards England.
“I had left Lyon and signed in Le Havre to take a step forward and have playing time,” he admits. In the end, I didn’t have one. I did not expect this. But it wasn’t just the coaches’ fault (Editor’s note: Oswald Tanchot, then Paul Le Guen). It is a whole. My personal involvement also perhaps left something to be desired. In Le Havre, instead of progressing, I stagnated and then regressed. I couldn’t go on like this anymore. “
He therefore chose to terminate his contract to join the Red Star. “I grew up in the Paris region and it feels good to come back to your family,” he says. When I played against the Red Star as a youth, it was often hot games. It’s a very good club. It must allow me to bounce back. For me, it is a questioning. I want to become the player I was in Lyon again, good in percussion, decisive in the area. This goal against Lens is my first with the Red Star. It was very important to me to be decisive. I hope it will give me confidence to help the team move up to L2. “