Han-Noah Massengo on 'intensity' of the Championship and how he's improved since signing for ...

"It's football so it's the twin but the method it's played here, there's other intensity," Massengo said, in comparing Ligue 1 to the Championship. "When I ...
2020-03-12 20:26:06
Han-Noah Massengo on 'intensity' of the Championship and how he's improved since signing for ...

The French midfielder has adapted quickly to his new surroundings and is loving life at BS3

Han-Noah Massengo has added nearly a stone in bodyweight since arriving in England to cope with the extra physical challenge Championship football presents and turn him into a more complete midfielder.

Massengo has enjoyed an impressive transition from Ligue 1 reserve at Monaco to Championship regular, making 21 league starts for in his first full professional season.

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The France Under-19 international has stood out with his calm and methodical passing and commitment to his defensive work despite precious experience of first-team football before signing for City.

A regular criticism of the 18-year-old, however, is that he often finds himself outsized among some midfields in the division and can be brushed off the ball a little too easily.

At 18, Massengo still has a way to go before he fully grows into his adult body but to help address the physical shortfall, he's been working hard in the gym at Failand.

"It's football so it's the same but the way it's played here, there's more intensity," Massengo said, in comparing Ligue 1 to the Championship. "When I was in Monaco I played only seven games and that wasn't - start a game, start another game in the week ...

"Here you have two games in a week, you always have to be ready and be careful in your life with what you're doing. I've been going to the gym a lot, I've added 6kg since I've been here."

A football addict, the Paris Saint-Germain fan has been working hard with head coach Johnson on improving his game which he feels has developed considerably since he arrived in England.

In particular losing his natural exuberance at wanting to chase the ball and instead look to hold his position in the midfield.

"The way I read the game," he replies, when asked what aspect of his game has changed the most over the last eight months.

"Before I was playing with enthusiasm, so I was running to get the ball but now I'm thinking about my angles, my shoulder position - I'm working with the gaffer about this a lot.

"I have to improve offensively. I have to be able to play defensively and offensively, not just defensively and a bit offensively - do both. So I have to work on it, do some extras, work on my body and the way I see the game."

Massengo is living in the centre of Bristol, with his family living in Redland as his brother attends university and his younger sisters are at school in the city.

Having that family unit has allowed him to settle in new surroundings, much like when he left Paris for Monaco in his teens, and he's taken an instant liking to Bristol - with the exception of the weather.

Our Robins reporter will also keep you up-to-date with all the goings-on at BS3

"I really love the place, the city, the club, the people at the club - I'm really enjoying it here," . "People are very nice with me."

Massengo is taking six hours of English lessons a week to help adapt to life in a new country and more than held his own over a 12-minute press conference on Wednesday.

He did, somewhat amusingly have to take to Twitter 24 hours later when some supporters claimed his pronunciation of "sharp" sounded more like another, less flattering word beginning with "sh" when discussing Blackburn's strengths.

His happiness also extends to day-to-work at City where he's been taken aback about how inclusive the club is in terms of the lines of communication, both from the coaching staff and players.

Massengo admits it wasn't like that when he first started training with the first-team at Monaco as a 17-year-old under Thierry Henry with more of a hierarchy. He does, however, see similarities between the and Henry.

"I've got a really good relationship with him (Johnson). We speak a lot together (in terms) of how I can improve.

"It's quite the same (as with Henry) because they have a really good contact with players, they know the way they want to play. They say what they think.

"Everybody is together, if a player has to give you advice, he will. was really close to me because we were playing together so he gave me a lot of advice. Korey (Smith) as well."

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