Nantes (France), Nov 29 (AP) Nantes coach Pierre Aristouy, who helped the eight-time French champion avoid relegation last season, was fired on Wednesday.

The Ligue 1 team said in a statement that Aristouy was relieved of his duties, with his replacement to be announced later in the day.

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Sports daily L'Equipe reported that Nantes has reached an agreement in principle with former Lille coach Jocelyn Gourvennec.

“Nantes would particularly like to thank Pierre Aristouy and his staff, who put all their human qualities and talent at the service of the club. Appreciated by all, they helped the club to maintain its position at the end of last season,” the club said.

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Nantes was in 17th place in the league, with four of the 20 clubs getting relegated last season, when Aristouy took over from Antoine Kombouaré with four league games left to play.

This season, the club got off to a poor start but Aristouy had managed to put the team back on track before a four-match winless run — including three defeats — left Nantes in 11th place, 15 points behind leader Paris Saint-Germain. (AP)

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