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The Kévin Gauthier Story

Started on 30 March 2016 by MJK46
Latest Reply on 8 June 2016 by mgriffin2012
MJK46's avatar Group MJK46
7 yearsEdited

The Press Conference

Well today is my first press conference here for HJK. I am very excited to be here and ready to answer all these questions. What is funny this is my first ever press conference for a new team, previously I just started coaching and would just have a random quote here and there but I am in the big time now.

For this press conference Chairman Olli-Pekka Lyytikäinen and Director of Football Tuomo Saarnio will be joining me. Media wise we have a few local journalist and someone from the French sports paper L'Équipe. I have a little surprise for everyone so this should be good.

Olli-Pekka Lyytikäinen:"Good afternoon for those who do not know my name is Olli-Pekka Lyytikäinen and I am the Chairman of this club, I would like to welcome you to this introductory press conference for Kévin Gauthier. He would like to start with some welcoming remarks"

Kévin Gauthier: "Hei ja hyvää iltapäivällä olen ylpeä olla täällä Helsingissä. Haha sorry if my Finnish is really bad I have just started learning it a month ago and still am having some problems with the language. Well other than that I am very happy to be here and excited for this oppertunity."

"Alright, Kévin, let's begin the questions. First, let's go with your new job. What are your feelings on being the manager at Helsingin Jalkapalloklubi?"

" I am very proud and pleased to be here HJK is a massive club with a lot of history and I am very happy that Olli has selected me to lead his club into the new decade."

"Obviously you join this club after spending the last two seasons in Macau with Sporting where you go them a treble and were worshiped by the fans, do you have any regrets leaving the club so early?"

"Honestly there is no regret and I did enjoy my time there, I would still be there if HJK had not approached me a few months ago, I wish them all the luck in the upcoming season and AFC Cup."

"What are your long-term plans and short-term plans for HJK, if any?"

'This will sound very ambitious but I want to get this club to a point where we can go past the group stages of both major Continental Cups and maybe win one or two."

"A little bit too ambitious, don't you think?"

"Not at all my friend, if you look at my resume especially from my time in New Caledonia I know what I am doing and I feel with the right players and environment we can become the best in Europe."

"What do you think of the prospect of playing in Champions League later on in the season?"

"I am very excited to be managing a club that will be in Champions League, it is one of the most enjoyable and competitive tournaments out there."

"Do you have any transfer targets in mind?"

" Yes, there are a few that I am looking at and I think we can come to an agreement with a few, there are some players like Chininha and Luis Domingues from Sporting that I might want to bring over."

"Could you please talk about your play style, from what I have seen it is really unique and something we haven't seen in Finland yet?"

"Sure, well I have a few tactics that I like to employ that are about heavy attacking and counter attacking, it all depends on the situation but during play things can change on a fly. These tactics have helped give my clubs tons of goals and really good defensive records, HJK will flourish under the system."

"Will you be concentrating solely on the Veikkausliiga, or will you be focusing more on the cup competitions, like the Suomen cup and the Finnish League Cup?"

"Pretty much all three competitions I think this club has what it takes to have a sweep of all Finish domestic competitions this upcoming season."

"We all here have noticed you have been emphasizing the concept of the new decade, yes we are now entering the 2020s but can you be a bit more open about it."

"Great question, well I am hoping that we here at HJK can have one of the best decades in club history with the goals of Europe, I want HJK to be the envy of all Nordic Nations and that we become a destination that players will want to go and fans to follow us."

"One last question, you seem to be targeting both the Champions League and Europa League and that is fine and all but do you find it to be a disadvantage that the club runs on an opposite calendar then most of Europe??"

"Oh wow that is a really good question. Yes that is a disadvantage but if Swedish Clubs can be successful as they run the same calendar so we should too, it will take a lot of hard work though. Well I feel this press conference is over, you all have been wonderful any last questions?""

Olli-Pekka Lyytikäinen: "Well it looks like that is all for now thank you for coming out to this today and there will be a meet and greet if you would like to get to know Kévin a little more."
Great update! Really looking forward to your managerial methods at HJK, will it be different or no?! And really ambitious with your goals
Very good update! The press conference style of writing feels like it suits you; this feels professional and fun.

Looking forward to seeing MJK at HJK!! :D
Balik "Well Balik it will be on some fronts, I really want to work with Finnish youth and try to keep my squad mostly Finnish."

Akash That should be the slogan MJK at HJK lol
Really great in depth interview mate, extremely well written! Cant wait to see whether you hit the ground running with HJK!

First Day of Training

Now today is 2 December of 2019 and this is the first day the players and I meet. I was sort of shocked that they were starting so early. I would have at least started the preseason after Christmas giving the guys time before the Finnish League Cup next month to start the year off.

So the first thing I did was introduce myself and tell them my goals. It looks like they are all excited and were happy that I feel we can win a treble. What was even more impressive was that my Finnish was good enough for them and they are all excited to play for me. After the introductions I had them get in some fitness testing as well as conditioning.

During this time I had let our head fitness coach take over so I could go over the roster real fast. There were a few players that Tuomo Saarnio had pointed out to me as our key players. They all look really good and I can’t wait to see them in action.

Key Players for 2020 Veikkausliiga

Juho Hiltunen: Striker

Juho is the current captain and I can see why. First off he has been with this club since 2016 when he joined the academy and rose up to the senior team. At only 20 years old he has made 52 league appearances and scored 25 goals. Viewing some highlights I noticed his finishing is off the chart. I think I will keep him as my captain and I believe he will get better in my system. Apparently he is being courted by a bunch of clubs in Belgium. I will need to have a chat with him about his future plans.

Lucas Lingman:

He was listed as our key player and I can see why. Despite only being 21 Lucas has been with this club for a long time since his academy days. In this past season he led the league in assist and I can see him doing that once again. There is only major red flag about him though. When I had arrived I was warned he has been causing trouble by trying to leave the club. Apparently his reason is that he feels he is “too big” for us now.

Ville Laiho: Midfield

Ville was recommended to me as our best player in the academy. At 17 years old he has made a small impact on the first team when he is called upon. Last season during the Europa League he made two appearances and scored a goal. The one thing that stands out to me is his speed and acceleration, this kid is really fast. I am thinking of converting him to a striker or at least teaching him either the shadow striker or false 9 roles.

Once today's session was finished I let everyone know how excited I was for the upcoming season and was happy that nobody had failed their fitness test. I had let them know that in a few days around 8 or 9 December we were going to have a little scrimmage to see how they are doing with what is being taught on tactics.
Good luck man, will be hard to fit into the schedule but you can do it successfully!
MJK46's avatar Group MJK46
7 yearsEdited
Wednesday, January 01, 2020

HJK Helsinki Season Preview

Happy New Year and welcome to the 2020s!!! We begin our Veikkausliiga team by team season preview with current champions HJK. Last season was really successful as the club added their 30th league title and 12th Suomen Cup.

For the current champions this new decade brings new changes. After Mika Lehkosuo left the club back in August there was a vacancy for his role as he left for Germany. About a month later it was announced that 38 year old Frenchman Kévin Gauthier would become the new leader. He would start at the end of the 2019 season.

For Gauthier his expectations are quite high from the board, supporters and the media as he is expected to obtain a treble in the upcoming season. It shouldn't be much of a problem for him as HJK have what it takes to go all the way domestically this season. Also he (Gauthier) has experience wining several different competitions in his career.

With players such as Lucas Lingman and Juho Hiltunen HJK look to be unstoppable in the league offensively with Gauthier's tactical system. On the defensive side they are lead by German Patrick Mainka. The 25 year old who joined form Dortmund II last season appeared in 33 matches for the club and scored two goals. On the goalkeeping front 20 year old Nooa Sipilä. This current HJK squad is quite young with an average age of 21.


Entering 2020 HJK are still one of the best clubs in Finland and still produce the best Finnish talent. With the new manager it seems like the club is ready to continue winning league titles and maybe get 40 by the time the decade ends. One thing so far is that Gauthiers energy has everyone involved with the club on high spirits so early on. Look for them to start making noise in Europe this summer.

The supporters of the club have been pleased with ownership due to the large investment, but are voicing concerns about the fact the club struggles to keep talent in the team. The Mainka buy last season has relieved some of this pressure, but if he doesn't work out, the heat might be unbearable. Still, HJK's brass has faith in the new coaching staff and will let them decide what needs to be done to become the best in Europe.


Winning the domestic treble and advancing beyond the Playoff Round in UEFA Champions League. The management has put a premium on Europe and if HJK can somehow make it past the playoff round they will be able to attract better talent in the future. Unfortunately, because of the seeding processes, HJK might very well end up in a difficult group.


Domestically it looks like THEY WILL WIN a treble and it should be a very enjoyable season. On the European front it is still to be seen where they will end up and how they fare against whoever they are drawn against. They could make it to the Europa League Group Stage at worst.


The biggest thing for Gauthier is that his team is so young and will need some veteran players on the squad. Currently there are three players above the age of 25 and that seems like a major problem as there is really no older leadership outside of 30 year old Henri Aalto. The one area the HJK should look for the upcoming transfer window is a goalkeeper with age and experience.
Very ambitious plans for the club but if anyone can achieve them its Kevin! Good luck man, this should be an interesting adventure!
A domestic treble would certainly add to your ever-increasing trophy cabinet..... it would be interesting to see where your manager ranks in relation to the Hall of Fame. Are you far off of the Top 20 Worldwide?
You have been getting average teams to perform well... who knows what you are capable of doing with a good side!
C.J.Lippo I hope it isn't too ambitious I want a nice challenge

Justice Not even close lol here is where I am to the top 20

Griffo That is a very scary thought haha

Two players join HJK


Since officially joining the club back in November Manager Kévin Gauthier has been preparing for the upcoming season and has made his first two signings with the club. Despite the fact they joined last month the club's offices were on holiday due to the Christmas Break, so it isn't until now that we make the official announcement. Gauthier noted more should be joining up around the time the transfer window opens in February.

The first up is Japanese Attacking Midfielder Ken'Ichro Oikawa. The 21 year old joins the club on a free transfer after spending the last few years at Júbilo Iwata. During his stint there he made 71 appearances and scored 11 goals. He is a very determined player who has amazing speed and pace. Oikawa told HJK TV, "I am very excited to play for HJK and look forward to the season."

Next up English Defender Louis Walton. The former Manchester City Academy Graduate joins HJK after spending his career in England. Despite not making any appearances for the Man City First Team he was loaned out to Northampton where he made 10 appearances. Walton at the age of 20 is ranked as the fifth best defender on the senior team and looks to get better with age. "HJK is a massive club and I feel they were the right move for me to make, I love how manager Kévin Gauthier has the ability to transform players and get their full potential out of them," said Walton to HJK TV.

Good looking signings mate, hopefully they can be useful both in the short term and long term!

My First Stadin Derby


This is the one day that everyone has been telling me to get ready for. Well it is not just one day but the first of many as we face rival Idrottsföreningen Kamraterna, Helsingfors (HIFK) in the Stadin Derby. I am very excited and nervous for this. Hopefully we can come out on top and beat them here in the Finnish League Cup. The reason why this derby is called the Stadin Derby is because both HJK and HIFK share the same stadium.

Here is a little video by Copa 90 on the derby:

The Match
Sonera Stadium, Helsinki
Veikkausliiga Ligacup
Group A: Matchday Four

0' HIFK start the match

1' Lucas Lingman (HJK) commits foul and no card is given and HIFK is awarded the free kick

26' INJURY!! Lassi Lappalainen (HJK) is injured and is replaced by Anssi Vainio

37' HJK's Ken'Ichro Oikawa scored but is quickly called for offside, the score is still 0-0

39' GOAL!!!: HIFK's Adel El Said opens up the scoring. HIFK are up 1-0

45' The ref blows the whistle for halftime, the score is HIFK 1-0 HJK

46' Esosa Igbinoba (HIFK) trips Oikawa (HJK) and is awarded the matches first yellow card

66' HJK make a substitution, Julien Benhaim replaces Ken'Ichro Oikawa

67' HIFK make a substitution, Patrik Ahonen replaces Esosa Igbinoba

78' HIFK make a substitution, Aristide Bahin replaces Pauli Bjorkstrand

89' Referee calls for 3' of extra time

90+1' Julien Benhaim (HJK) commits a foul but is not carded HIFK is awarded a free kick

90+3' Referee blows the wistle for game over, HIFK defeats rival HJK by a score of 1-0.

Post Match Analysis:

For HJK this was a surprise loss as they were expected to win. For new manager Kévin Gauthier he loses his first match while in charge of HJK. For HIFK this gives them their second win of the Veikkausliiga Ligacup and are still in second place trailing HJK by one point. Both sides have four more matches to go in Group A.

You are reading "The Kévin Gauthier Story".

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