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Duel Laporte-Grill for the presidency of the FFR: who supports whom?


On the eve of the ballot for the election to the presidency of the FFR (open from Friday 8 a.m. to Saturday noon), a non-exhaustive point on the personalities who have expressed their preference for one or the other of the candidates.

Boudjellal, Gathié, Guirado… vote Laporte

The first supporters of Bernard Laporte, outgoing president, are obviously the members of his list.

We find

Serge Simon

, his loyal right-hand man, but also the former second row of the XV of France and current director of the training center of the Stade Français Paris,

Pascal Papé


Wenda Noury

, former referee and manager of the French Women's XV (1995 to 2008) is also running mate.

A defector since she was part of the list of the late Pierre Camou, Laporte's predecessor at the head of the FFR.

Bernard Laporte can also rely on seven presidents of regional leagues, including

Alain Doucet

, at the head of Occitanie, the biggest league in France.

He and others co-signed "the letter of the 20", the official endorsement of twenty major leaders of amateur rugby.

In addition, the boss of the organization of the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France,

Claude Atcher

, is a faithful. 

Although those concerned have not officially said it, Bernard Laporte prided himself on the "friendship" of two Top 14 leaders,

Thomas Lombard

, CEO of Stade Français Paris (whom he had under his command as a player) and 

Didier Lacroix

, president of Stade Toulousain.

That of SU Agen,

Jeff Fonteneau,

has published a tweet to affirm loud and clear his support for the outgoing president during his police custody.

The wealthy owner-president of Montpellier,

Mohed Altrad

, is finally a strong ally.

I address all my support to @BernardLaporte_ President of @FranceRugby in this event.

Let justice do its investigation, 10 days before the Federation elections ...

- Jeff Fonteneau (@JeffFonteneau) September 23, 2020

Renowned former leaders of French rugby were present at its first meeting, in Carqueiranne in mid-August, to publicly display their camp:

Max Guazzini

, former president of Stade Français, and

Mourad Boudjellal

, former boss of RC Toulon.

Two men who had a certain Bernard Laporte as their trainer.

“I read in the press that voting Laporte is voting Simon.

And I can tell you that voting Grill is voting Goze.

Paul Goze has said he is unlikely to serve a third term.

The probably not means if Laporte is elected.

But if Grill is elected, the door is open and I bet you Paul Goze will continue the damage for at least four years.

If I'm wrong, Paul, can you make a commitment before Saturday not to serve a third term regardless of the result of the election to the presidency of the FFR? ”, Besides Boudjellal mocked, Wednesday, in his column on


 "Mourad de Toulon".

Fabien Galthié

, the current coach of the XV of France, also made an act of allegiance.

In an interview with

Midi Olympique

, he was very clear, going so far as to put his resignation in the balance.

“For twenty years, my fate has been linked to that of Bernard, that's a fact.

A very strong bond exists between us.

He trusted me to put the France team back on the right track.

He appointed me for it.

The question (

of his resignation, Editor's note

) could arise after the elections.


Public support also expressed, also in the columns of


, by

Guilhem Guirado

, the ex-captain of the XV of France and current hooker of Montpellier.

“I saw what Bernard Laporte accomplished during his tenure as president of the Federation.

He has taken essential measures for the future of French rugby, in particular in winning back young people.

(…) I trust Bernard.

He is always so catchy and poignant in his interventions. "

»READ ALSO: FFR Elections: Bernard Laporte attacks L'Equipe after a poll favorable to Florian Grill

Novès, Blanco, Lièvremont… vote Grill

Florian Grill has no less than seven former international players in its list:

Abdelatif Benazzi, Serge Blanco, Eric Champ, Jean-Marc Lhermet

(his right-hand man, who will become vice-president of the FFR in the event of victory on Saturday),

Fabien Pelous , Julien Pierre and Jean-Claude Skrela

, in alphabetical order.

Most of them went into battle to assert their choice and to attack the current president of the FFR and his record harshly.

The former boss of French referees,

Didier Mené

, is also on the Ovale Ensemble list.

If he has never expressed himself publicly,

Paul Goze

, the president of the National League (pro rugby) is, because of the war waged by Bernard Laporte, obviously in favor of an election of the opponent, who promises "Appeasement" with the NRL.

The president of the Section Paloise,

Bernard Pontneau

, for his part, appeared alongside Florian Grill.

Strong reinforcement also with the public support of a big boss,

Claude Bébéar

, founder of Axa.

The president of the Ile-de-France League is assured of the support of two former coaches,

Marc Lièvremont


Guy Novès


The first was even to be part of the list running for the votes of the presidents of the amateur clubs, but deep differences of point of view with Serge Blanco pushed him to give up.

If he has distanced himself, the one who led the XV of France in the final of the World Cup in 2011 is still in support.

"I do not hide, even if I am no longer directly involved, that I would like Florian Grill to be able to succeed, to be able to win, to be able to be heard, that his actions carried out within the Ile-de-France rugby league can be rolled out at the national level ”, recently confided Marc Lièvremont.

The second is much more active.

After having hesitated for a long time to make a concrete commitment, Guy Novès, who has a stubborn grudge against Bernard Laporte who dismissed him from his position as coach in December 2017 (collecting € 1 million in compensation at the end of his trial at the prud'hommes), threw himself into battle at the end of January.

He participated in several public meetings of Oval Ensemble and registered on the list of opposition to the election to the Ligue Occitanie.

The former sports boss of Stade Toulousain is full of praise for Florian Grill, even speaking of “admiration”: “It was very important to get to know his personality, his skills.

To see him answer with such lucidity and precision on all subjects, it is a wonder, it is restful and it is reassuring. ”

A reinforcement that Grill obviously puts forward given the popularity of Novès.

“It is a monument of French rugby.

The conditions of his eviction remain absolutely dramatic, for him and for the image of rugby.

A reasonable business owner does not advertise someone's dismissal in the press.

It is obvious that it has cost rugby. "

Two former assistant coaches of the Blues,

Patrice Lagisquet


Yannick Bru

(current manager of Aviron Bayonnais in Top 14) have made no secret of their sympathy for Florian Grill, posing all smiles at his side.

Thomas Castaignède

, ex-prestigious player of the XV of France and current leader of the Stade Toulousain, also expressed his support in the columns of

Midi Olympique


“A lot of things can be improved and Florian Grill seems to me to have the qualities to achieve it.

(…) Being at the head of a federation requires first of all to know how to listen… ”He physically participated in some of the 230 meetings of the Ovale Ensemble list.

Other glories of the XV of France, such as

Pascal Ondarts


Louisou Armary


Daniel Dubroca

have also publicly


their preference for Florian Grill.

The former captain of the XV of France and icon of the SU Agen had thus made a point of being present at his side on August 23 during a barbecue-meeting in Lacapelle-Biron, declaring himself seduced by “his humanism”.

"He has a speech that looks like me on all points," Daniel Dubroca told

Sud Ouest


Rugby has brought me a lot of satisfaction and I tried to give it back by doing everything I could to live and profit from it like some people.

Florian will only do good in rugby. "

Read also

  • FFR elections: a look back at sixteen months of murderous little phrases

Source: lefigaro

All news articles on 2020-09-30

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