Honors for Bernard Tapie. Mayor of Marseille, Benoît Payan announces Thursday, for La Provence, that “the large esplanade which leads to the Vélodrome stadium, on the Jean-Bouin side, will bear the name of Bernard Tapie”. An announcement which 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, on May 26, 1993, against AC Milan. “It was our duty and our responsibility to do so,” promises Mr. Payan. And to clarify: “It is not a question here of talking about the politician or the businessman, who was complex and out of the ordinary. I retain the image of the sports leader, who arrived in 1986 after Gaston Defferre (mayor of Marseille from 1953 to 1986, editor's note) extended his hand to him and who immediately became a Marseillais. Bernard Tapie is not afraid of anything and he will make this club what it has become. The supporters nicknamed him "the Boss" because he carried OM to the top of Europe. Today, it is in our history.”
A rich history of nine French champion titles and ten victories in the Coupe de France, but which tipped into another dimension after this winning headbutt from Basile Boli in Munich. “Forever the first”, as OM lovers like to remind us. “We mark in stone his name, his passage, his contribution to the history of this club”, explains Benoît Payan, specifying that all this was decided “in agreement with his family”.
We think in particular of the son of Bernard Tapie, Laurent, who has often regretted the lack of initiative of the town hall and the club after the death of his dad, on October 3, 2021. The said Laurent Tapie, however, wants more and reveals, always via La Provence, his project to build "a commemorative work, a statue which reproduces a scene from May 1993 when the team presented the Champions League at the Vélodrome, with my father carrying the cup". Fabien Barthez, Basile Boli, Marcel Desailly, Didier Deschamps, Éric Di Meco and Franck Sauzée will also be represented in this three-meter bronze statue which will be made by the sculptor Joël Vergne. “You need at least 250,000 euros,” slips Laurent Tapie, who, after having financed the start of the project, is launching an online kitty (ajamaislespremiers.org). “The objective is to raise much more money than these 250,000 euros, decrypts the Tapie son. We are going to offer the 2000 biggest subscribers to see their name engraved on the base. If the quest is more profitable than expected, the money raised will be donated to the "Neuf de coeur" association founded by the former OM Ballon d'Or, Jean-Pierre Papin.