Mathieu Cachbach has chained three tenures since the resumption of the championship: the young 20-year-old midfielder, on loan from Metz, convinced Jean-Louis Garcia. Walfoot spoke with the Arlon native.
On loan from FC Metz since last summer, Matthew Cachbach (20 years old) took his troubles patiently, but is now taking advantage of the new dynamic installed by Jean-Louis Garcia: the young midfielder has been a starter since the resumption of the championship, and hopes to prove that he has his place in the long run. term in the midfield of RFC Seraing.
Hello, Matthew. First of all, can you tell us how you feel after the meetings of the last weeks? It’s the first time you’ve played matches at this level…
First of all, I was very happy to see my name on the team composition before the match against Union Saint-Gilloise. After that, everything happened very quickly… But I’ve been training hard for 6 months in order to be ready when we call on me. In Belgium, even when you’re not playing, you progress, because the level of training is very high. I live for it on a daily basis, so I was well prepared. It’s just a matter of recovering well, hydrating well, eating well, because it’s true that we play every 3-4 days. And of course, it was a lot of emotions in a short time. I gave everything and then it’s up to the coach to judge my performance.
For your part, how do you judge your performance, precisely?
I was a little shy at first, because it was quite new for me to start and I had to get my bearings. Against Union and Saint-Trond in the first half, above all, there was a bit of shyness; against Beerschot, I felt that I was gaining momentum. I managed more gestures, I was able to bring out a few balloons, I was more comfortable technically. My confidence also comes from the confidence that the coach places in me.
There was clearly a before and after winter break for you; is it limited to the change of coach?
Let’s say that a change of coach brings other ideas, other perspectives and other choices, it can be good. The fact that players left for the CAN also helped me to be one of the coach’s choices and I now want to convince him that it was the right decision. This is my objective: to prove that even once the squad is complete, I have my place in the 11 and the qualities to play.
In particular, you missed the Cup match against Anderlecht, a choice of Jordi Condom when you started in the two previous matches… A big disappointment?
Yes and no. Yes, because as a young player, this is the kind of meeting you dream of! But the choices of the coach are the choices of the coach, they must be respected. The most disappointing was the elimination on penalties, even if the Cup was not an objective.
What is your relationship with Jean-Louis Garcia?
She is very good. He is a very meticulous coach who communicates a lot, as soon as there is something wrong, he tells me. Every detail is studied, it’s very interesting for a young person like me. I still have a lot of room for improvement and the coach will help me in this regard.
It is often said that a coach who arrives in a team playing maintenance must also help his players mentally.
He has the experience to handle these kinds of situations, indeed, and that is very important. This is also why this victory against Beerschot was crucial. We were still on a long losing streak and that did a lot of good for the mentality of the locker room. But everyone here knows that results only come with hard work. We will do everything to take something this Saturday against AS Eupen.
How is the atmosphere in the group despite this complicated situation?
She has always been excellent! The Seraing locker room sticks together, it’s a bunch of friends and that’s very important in this situation. The victory against Beerschot was good for everyone but the atmosphere was really always good. Now we know what we have to do and we’re going to give everything on the pitch: no one thinks they’ve arrived. It is obvious that Seraing will have to fight until the end, we cannot allow ourselves to relax, even if we beat Eupen this Saturday.
And for a young person, what does it feel like to play the maintenance? This is not what we dream of in a training center…
For 6 months here, I work like crazy. Seraing is a team where everyone, including the youngsters, knows what they have to do. And for us, it’s a great training school too. The fact that the results are not always there, that you have to fight, that the facilities are not always ideal, that builds character.
Does the management of Metz remain attentive to your situation?
The sports director of FC Metz (Philippe Gaillot, nes) is also, in a way, sports director of Seraing and is attentive to each of our services, yes. There is a real follow-up with the players on loan from Metz. It’s very positive because it doesn’t give us the impression of being patches, ostracized from the club to which we belong. For me, it’s important, because it’s obviously in a corner of my head to impose myself in Metz, where I left when I was 13 years old.
But that doesn’t mean that I just want to be a passing player at Seraing. My objective today is to maintain with Seraing. We really want to offer that to the supporters.
Supporters that you will have the opportunity to meet a little more this Saturday: since your first tenure in the league, they were absent…
Yes, it was a shame they weren’t there and when I started against Union, I thought of them. It’s special to play in front of an empty stadium. I am one of the players who flourish better in front of the public. This Saturday, they will be there and we will push hard against Eupen, and we are happy about that.
At the start of the season, you said you had noted the date of the derby against Standard: you hope to play it well, I imagine!
Oh, given our situation, I want to play every game (laughs)! They will all be very important. Of course, Sclessin is special, but I’m not focusing on a match now. I just want to give my all and play as much as possible. Football is my life!
You are only 20 years old, so you are eligible for the Belgian U21 team; by evolving in D1A, it is possible. Have you ever thought about it?
I have never had personal contact with the Belgian Union, but I know that by working hard and repeating the good performances, I can claim it. It is an objective, of course, because defending the colors of my country would be magnificent.