French Sports Minister Amélie Oudéa-Castera recognized on Friday “malfunctions” in the reception of spectators on Saturday during the Argentina-England Rugby World Cup match, but welcomed a “rapid correction. We experienced some malfunctions, undoubtedly, but no major incidents either, no security problems and above all an immediate reaction the next day for South Africa-Scotland, where the experience was indisputable from start to finish. declared the minister, who was speaking in Marseille on the sidelines of the inauguration of a renovated “city stadium” as part of a program supported in particular by OM and the CMA-CGM foundation.
Saturday during the Argentina-England match, the first of the World Cup played in Marseille, several hundred spectators missed the kick-off after being delayed at the ticket counters. The next day, the South Africa-Scotland meeting was held without difficulty. “This rapid correction in the management of spectator flows and on certain levels of the experience experienced by spectators in the stadiums is very positive,” judged Ms. Oudéa-Castera. “You have to remember that when these big competitions start, there are always a few hiccups at the start, because they are large-scale events. But we absolutely must rectify the situation and now, match after match, it is impeccable. We owe it to visitors from all over the world,” she added.
In May 2022, the organization of the Champions League final between Liverpool and Real Madrid at the Stade de France turned into a fiasco with very serious incidents before the match. The attention paid to security issues during the Rugby World Cup is all the greater as France will host the Olympic Games in 2024. “We are in this logic of wanting to definitively silence the critics and to be at a level of excellence in the spectator experience and the management of flows,” declared the minister. “We must also ensure that there is not too much time at the refreshment stands, that the anthems are fluid. This is all that we really want to put absolutely in order to live up to this honor that we have to host this Rugby World Cup. We want it to be perfect,” she concluded.