Hundreds of supporters gave an incredible welcome this Saturday at the beginning of the afternoon at the airport to the players of Castres Olympique returning from their victorious semi-final against Toulouse in Nice the day before.
Several hundred supporters and a sea of blue and white flags awaited the Castres heroes this Saturday at Castres airport. Expected around noon, the Castres Olympique players arrived around 1 p.m. and broke through the crowd which reserved them a guard of honor of nearly 50 m, from the airport gate to half of the car park.
The heat and the wind of Autan did not discourage all these supporters, some of whom had arrived since 11 a.m., who absolutely wanted to commune with their victorious team from Toulouse the day before in Nice in the semi-finals of the Top 14 and on their way to the final at the Stade de France next Friday. Some had not slept all night or very little.
Like Isabelle who had traveled by bus to Nice. Leaving at 8 a.m. the day before, she arrived in Castres around 10 a.m. “Time to take a shower and come here, loose the faithful supporter who had almost no voice. It was great in Nice, a huge atmosphere. The people of Toulouse were filming us, they had never seen that”. For her, who was already there when the players left on Wednesday morning at the airport, it was, as for all the others, obvious to be present for their return.
“We are there for them, we are small but we had them, says a supporter who savors “the luck we have here”. It keeps the whole town alive, it makes people happy. Yesterday at the stadium, the players were in tears coming to see us in the stands after the match. They were happy to make us happy. And we want to give them that happiness. And I hope it will be ecstasy next Friday”.
“It’s great to see CO win this half, against Stade Toulouse as well. It’s like a good meal that has a nice sauce in addition that brings a delicious taste, smiles Etienne who wanted to be there to experience “the enthusiasm, the fervor and the solidarity of the city behind the club”. And tell them thank you and that we’ll be there again in a week. Because it is useless to go to the final if it is not to win it. »
The pride of Jérémy Fernandez’s parents
In the mass of Castrais who arrived in clusters and who passed the time by singing supporters’ songs, there were also the parents of Jérémy Fernandez, the scrum-half of the CO, a native of the country. “It is a great pride, since he has been at the club, he has climbed the ladder, to be there it was his dream, cowardly moved Nicole his mother. It’s great for him, for the team, it’s a real group of friends who often see each other outside. I haven’t had him on the phone yet, just a message to tell him that we’ll be there to welcome him at the airport. Michel, the dad, has no other words than “proud” to describe his emotions. And if the couple could not go to Nice for family reasons, they will go to Paris. “We’ll manage, if necessary we’ll go by bike,” smiles Michel.
This popular jubilation necessarily delighted the players who lent themselves to photos and signings. “It creates a communion with the supporters, it is important, these are good times. But it’s not over, you have to measure things, comments Thomas Combezou, the three-quarter Castres center who has already experienced this atmosphere in 2018. It’s never the same. »
David Darricarrère, the coach of the Castres attack, was also all smiles and happy to see that his team “gives people happiness”. “But I also live it thinking about next week, it will be even better with the Shield,” says the coach. The CO is already well and truly projected on its final.
Matthias Rolland: “We have an incredible audience”
“We are also here to thank the club for everything it does for us,” says a supporter, referring to the €25 she only had to pay to go to Nice, i.e. €20 for a seat and €5 for the bus. . Indeed, thanks to the participation of the club, the town hall, the Department and the Region, hundreds of supporters were able to make the trip. “All season, we have an incredible public following us and the dynamic is even stronger during the final stages. The players are aware of all this and know that they have the responsibility to make our supporters proud and they make it good for us, reacted Matthias Rolland, the club director, seeing the crowd at the airport. They were there at the start on Wednesday, at the stadium we only heard Castres, and we had already had a small committee in Nice when the plane left and here it’s fabulous. The club director and his administrative staff met this Saturday afternoon to organize the logistics of the final. “We will try to offer the best possible things in terms of travel to our supporters. They deserve it. And when we see their exemplary behavior in Nice, they make us want to make an effort for them even more”.