“We will be very vigilant” on the future of the Girondins de Bordeaux, warns Senate Vice President Nathalie Delattre

Ten of Gironde’s eighteen parliamentarians sent a letter to Amélie Oudéa-Castéra, Minister of Sports, asking to receive a delegation from the Girondins de Bordeaux. This will take place on Wednesday. The club has been demoted to National 1 by the DNCG Appeals Committee and will be heard by the CNOSF on Thursday, July 21, as a last resort to save its skin in Ligue 2. If confirmed, this decision must be accompanied by a bankruptcy filing, condemning the club to evolve into National 3, the fifth division.

Several points have been put forward to motivate the July 5 demotion of the Girondists, starting with a very large debt, although President Gérard Lopez has announced an agreement with US creditors to reduce it. For its part, Nathalie Delattre (Radical Party), Vice-President of the Senate, Senator of Gironde and elected to the Bordeaux City Council, has shared the letter to the Minister on social networks. She describes the contours and reasons that led her to invest in saving the club from a historic collapse.

Franceinfo: sport: Can this mobilization of local parliamentarians have a real impact on the final decision of the DNCG?

Nathalie Delattre: I think so. In any case, going to court will be too late, as Ligue 2 resumes ten days later. Everything is based on the understanding of the accounting documents by the CNOSF, an advisory delegation of the public service and the opinion that the minister can form. She first said she didn’t want to go into the decision, then agreed to receive the club. We bring our stone to the building. If the Girondins are relegated, the women’s team will be hit, 300 jobs will be at risk…

Is it the responsibility of politicians to put this kind of “pressure” on the minister of a sports club?

There is the emotional side, we receive messages of support. But this club is also an important economic unit. I fight for companies. On mobilized for the Ford site in Blanquefort, jI don’t see why I wouldn’t do it for a sports club that has an impact on the life of the Gironde. I think it’s normal to respond to questions we get from the club, supporters or partners.

You talk about jobs, but there is already a social plan planned by Gérard Lopez after relegation to Ligue 2…

Yes, it is clear. We hear from the DNCG that it is not just any management here. But today there is no other solution. Of course, if the CNOSF opens a dialogue, this will all be looked at later.

Do you think, as he can say, that this decision is made more against Lopez than against the club?

It’s a feeling. degradations [administratives] are for the most part the result of the cessation of payment by clubs. This is not the case here. Expectations are sometimes misunderstood, all hypotheses can arise. You see it on social networks, there are questions. We can’t help but ask the question.

Several thousand Girondins supporters demonstrated in central Bordeaux on July 9, 2022, shortly after the club's relegation to National 1 was confirmed on appeal.  (MAXPPP)

It’s all the same as a manager who prefers to add a line of credit when the DNCG asks him to add equity. Does the demand drive for the government to move on without him?

I’m not defending Mr. Lopez! We have been seized because the club is in a catastrophic situation. I don’t think liquidation is a solution. It is interesting that the minister can talk about this with the leader, and that he asks himself the right questions. We must enter into this dialogue.

The feeling is that the political reactions come late. The arrivals of the investment fund GACP (in 2018) and then of Gérard Lopez (in 2021) were received positively. Given the club’s condition since then, this may be calling…

Yes, it can be a challenge. But if you are confronted with a club that is confronted with the departure of M6 (owner from 1999 to 2008) and you are offered a solution… You can also tell yourself that local partners can do things differently and be happy that it works. When I spoke to the Ultramarines (the main ultra group of the Girondins), I got positive feedback from them on the direction. At some point, tongues don’t always come off easily. If it gets complicated, yes, then we talk about it with politicians and participate in the dossier.

“I’ve been to the stadium a few times. I had negative feedback on the results, but not necessarily on the rest.”

Nathalie Delattre, Vice President of the Senate

at franceinfo: sports

Do you regret later that you have issued a favorable opinion on the various acquisitions since 2018?

Don’t live in regret or regret. We should try to see how we can move forward with the file to avoid judicial liquidation. I prefer to be pragmatic and learn from it. But when that happens, many of us will be very vigilant afterward.

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