Stade de France or not at the end of the semi-final against Monaco (this Thursday at 9:15 p.m.), the player of Rumilly-Vallières, Stéphane Viglierchio already knows the schedules for the next day: it will wake up at 4:30 and presence , an hour later in front of the reblochon production line in the cheese factory that employs him. Dive into the real world of amateur football.
“It looks simple, but not that much…”: standing behind his production line, the last link in the chain, just before the final packaging, Stéphane Viglierchio has a keen eye and a smile despite the morning schedule . It is 7am and he has been in post for 90 minutes already, the time for a football match. The time of the semi-final of the Coupe de France that he will play with Rumilly-Vallières (N2), against Monaco, Thursday (9.15 p.m.). Breathing in a daily professional life far from the field.
“Yes, it seems simple,” he resumes in front of his interlocutor, taken aback by the dexterity and the fluidity of the human gesture at the heart of a series of complex and autonomous machines. I receive piles of reblochons, I control themselves. they don’t have holes or poor workmanship; in short, if they are ready to sell. If everything is OK, I put them in the line and they are packed, the others go to the cast iron. I always start to the place of the customer and I say to myself: this one, I buy it or not? I am in a strategic position, I make the last point of control. “
“An eye on the reblochon in the morning and on the balloon in the evening!”
At the end of six years in this “factory” in Reblochons, if it has lost a little the taste of the flagship of Savoy cheeses, it is neither because of the covid, nor by the meticulousness and the concentration to have in the heart. automatic machines that complete its work. No, it’s a bit the “repetitive” side of the gesture: “up to 15,000 units checked daily, but sometimes it’s more like 10,000”. Understand: once back home, you should not offer him any more. “The first year I ate it, but now it’s only tartiflette,” he laughs. And again, in moderation because his coach takes out the scales every week to check the fat masses of his players. Cheese and high level athlete, the duo is hardly compatible: “but I’m not … ‘high level’, he smiles. I can afford a few small pleasures, too …”
Because Stéphane Viglierchio has a “double life”. And he made it a motto: “an eye on the reblochon in the morning and on the balloon in the evening!” The cheesemaker, seen early in the morning in the fruit farm of Cruseilles, near Annecy swaps, three evenings a week, his white laboratory outfit with charlotte on his head for his “football” clothes in the colors of his club, the GFA Rumilly-Vallières. “It allows me to work other muscles in the body…”
And also to work on a form of resistance and resilience in the land of plenty. Where the eight cheeses from Savoie are the pride of the workforce, who made a film in their honor. “To be beautiful and strong, I eat Beaufort”, “for the intense efforts, I take Abundance”, they launch in turn.
“It is 5:30 am to 12:30 pm, Sunday to Friday, resumes Viglierchio, on his daily newspaper. The alarm clock is at 4:30 am because I live far from the fruit farm. At 5:15 am, I am in the company. At 1 pm, I’m home and going to practice at 4:40 p.m. ” A precise schedule to juggle between kilometers, reblochons to pack and training. Without forgetting the rest page. “I try to ask myself when I get home…”
But don’t count on the 31-year-old midfielder to complain. Certainly, he hoped to break into football from above – he was at the gates of ETG, Evian Thonon Gaillard when the Haut-Savoyard club climbed the levels of professionalism in 2009, just before arriving in Ligue 1 in 2011 – but knee injuries nailed him to the bottom of the pyramid. A course that has no hold on a broad smile, barely masked by the drastic sanitary measures of the laboratory where he works from Sunday to Friday. Stéphane Viglierchio calls this “his real world”. “I have to work for a living, he says. Sometimes I’m tired but I make sure to be fully and everything is done in the mind. And I say to myself, on the morning of the match, I will be in cheese and in the evening, facing the stars of Ligue 1, who do only that with their lives. “
Not far, his boss, Luc Chabert appreciates. “You discover the characteristic of amateur football which tries to create the link between precisely the world of work and the world of sport, details the boss. Tomorrow, football stops; well, the player has his professional future assured with this job.” And the boss added: “There, with Stéphane, it is the heart of our project, amateur football. It is the image of our values and we will defend, that in front of Monaco. This is what gives us that extra soul, strength and heart in matches, I believe. “
“We”? Why, this “us”? Ah, yes because Luc Chabert is also one of the four presidents of GFA Rumilly-Vallières, born two years ago from the merger of two clubs in this territory of 17 municipalities with 51,000 inhabitants, wedged between Savoie (Aix les Bains ) and Haute-Savoie (Annecy). A double cap with very distinct visors. “The day is work, resumes the boss. In the evening and Sunday, it’s the stadium. We have never mixed all that: you have to put things in perspective and that’s how I think we can find the best balance. “
His boss is also club president
In the country of Emmental, no hole in the schedule. “It is not always easy to reconcile the agendas, resumes Luc Chabert. I try to balance all this. It is important vis-à-vis his colleagues and the company, that he remains an employee. like the others. The day after the Toulouse match with the qualification for the semi-final, he was at 5:30 am on his production machine. Yes, we are talking about the result, but no more. It is absolutely necessary to keep things in mind on a daily basis for balance. “
Stéphane Viglierchio is not offended and goes back to his recent memory of the after feat against Toulouse (2-0), three weeks ago after the long communion in the locker room. “Yes, it stung a bit the next day, he admits anyway. In fact, at the end of the match, I put myself in a bubble and I said to myself: ‘no euphoria of the party . Tomorrow, Steph ‘, the alarm goes off at 4:30’. ” The confinement and curfew limiting places of temptation must have greatly facilitated this decision-making, too.
But let’s come back to the house motto: “an eye on the reblochon, in the morning and on the ball, only in the evening!” Is it that tight in these epic times? “Yes, it happens to me to think about the match, he admits. I see myself recovering a ball from Tchouaméni, making a dribble on Wissam Ben Yedder while telling me that these gestures will remain engraved for life.” Like a personal and eternal pride: “I could say in my life that I went to the semi-finals of the Coupe de France, working every morning at 5:30 am.”
Without closing his eyes – the reblochons continue to parade tirelessly – Stéphane Viglierchio is therefore savoring. “It’s still incredible what happens to us, we will play stars this Thursday in this year where the coach repeats it to us: ‘we are privileged. Imagine: not only, we are the only amateurs to play in France; but in addition, we are in the semi-final ‘. “
A stage of the competition that only Calais (2000), Montceau les Mines (2007) and Quevilly (2010 then 2012), clubs of the same level – National 2, the equivalent of the 4th division – have reached in the contemporary version of the Coupe de France.
A day of rest in the event of an exploit? Not sure!
Started on October 4, 2020 at the border with Switzerland in Divonne les Bains, the adventure could have ended in this 4th round, the gateway to the GFA Rumilly-Vallières competition. In the middle of a cluster – 15 players affected – the valid group finds the strength (3-5 after being led 3-1 per hour) to forceps out the opponent, ranked four levels below. Seven months and eight matches later (including one in March and two in April), the player and his president’s boss dream together in front of the production line. “Monaco is the biggest obstacle in the adventure, isn’t it ?, they wonder. Yes, the Rock seems immense. Mont-Blanc has changed departments! We will try to resist well but we are tackling a big team. We’re not going to admit defeat. And if we could push Monaco in the penalty shoot-out… “
And perhaps under these conditions, Luc Chabert will give at least two or three days off to prepare for D-Day. “You have to see your production manager”, responds, malicious Luc Chabert, suddenly speechless. Suddenly, its Savoyard side, a bit silent and the verb rare, would it not take over? But in the right place at the right time, at the heart of a rare period and therefore magnificent to experience. “You just have to savor, repeats tirelessly, Stéphane Viglierchio. You just have to have fun and that motivates 300% to show that we are capable of doing it in front of the stars. Prove that we are capable. we were happy to be there, so you can imagine in the semi-finals… It’s beautiful, it’s beautiful what we’re going through. “