Honours for Bernard Tapie. Mayor of Marseille, Benoît Payan announced Thursday, for La Provence, that "the large esplanade that leads to the Velodrome stadium, Jean-Bouin side, will bear the name of Bernard Tapie". An announcement that comes 18 months after the death of the former president of OM and on the eve of the celebrations of the 30th anniversary of the coronation of the Marseille club in the Champions League, May 26, 1993, against AC Milan. "It was our duty and responsibility to do so," Payan promises. And to specify: "It is not a question here of talking about the politician or businessman, who was complex and out of the norm. I remember the image of the sports leader, who arrived in 1986 after Gaston Defferre (mayor of Marseille from 1953 to 1986, editor's note) reached out to him and who became Marseillais in the moment. Bernard Tapie is not afraid of anything and he will make this club what it has become. The fans nicknamed him "the Boss" because he carried OM to the top of Europe. Today, it is in our history.»
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A rich history of nine France championship titles and ten victories in the France Cup, but which switched to another dimension after this winning ball of Basil Boli in Munich. "Forever the first", as OM lovers like to remind us. "We mark in marble his name, his passage, his contribution to the history of this club," explains Benoît Payan, adding that all this was decided "in agreement with his family".
We think in particular of Bernard Tapie's son, Laurent, who often regretted the lack of initiative of the town hall and the club after the death of his father on October 3, 2021. The said Laurent Tapie, however, wants more and unveils, still via La Provence, his project to build "a commemorative work, a statue that reproduces a scene from May 1993 when the team presents the Champions League at the Velodrome, with my father wearing the cup". Fabien Barthez, Basile Boli, Marcel Desailly, Didier Deschamps, Éric Di Meco and Franck Sauzée will also be represented in this three-metre bronze statue to be made by sculptor Joël Vergne. "You need at least 250,000 euros," says Laurent Tapie, who, after financing the start of the project, is launching an online fundraiser (ajamaislespremiers.org). "The goal is to raise much more money than these 250,000 euros, decrypts the son Tapie. We will propose to the 2000 largest subscribers to see their name engraved on the base. " If the quest is more remunerative than expected, the money collected will be donated to the association "Neuf de cœur" founded by the former Ballon d'Or of OM, Jean-Pierre Papin.