Saint-Etienne coach Galtier staying put

St Etienne's French coach Christophe Galtier celebrates after defeating Lyon on November 30, 2014 in Saint-Etienne, central France
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  • Christophe Galtier
    French association football player and manager

Saint-Etienne coach Christophe Galtier insisted on Friday that he will be staying at the Ligue 1 club until the end of the season amid speculation linking him with managerial positions in England. "I have a commitment to my club and my players; I am and will be the coach of Saint-Etienne until the end of the season," Galtier said at a press conference ahead of Sunday's French Cup last-64 tie at home to Nancy. The 48-year-old, who once worked as an assistant manager at Portsmouth, has been linked with a move to English Premier League sides Crystal Palace and Newcastle United but said he is concentrating on enjoying another successful season at the Stade Geoffroy-Guichard. "Our objective in 2015 will be to have a second half to the season up to the standard of what we did in the first half," added Galtier, whose side sit fourth in Ligue 1 at the season's halfway stage. Galtier also underlined his desire to keep hold of centre-back and captain Loic Perrin, who has been linked with Arsenal, saying: "He is our captain and plays in an important position where we will have players missing because of the Africa Cup of Nations." Perrin's defensive colleague Florentin Pogba has been called up by Guinea while, further forward, Ismael Diomande and Max-Alain Gradel are in the Ivory Coast squad for the finals in Equatorial Guinea. However, Galtier admitted that keeping hold of 29-year-old Perrin -- who hails from Saint-Etienne and has spent his entire career to date at the club -- may prove harder in the long run. "We are not talking about any old player. But there is the reality of the market and then there is the sporting project of the club that we must keep on track until the end of May," Galtier added.

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