Europe 1 with AFP // Photo credit: SYLVAIN THOMAS / AFP 15:38 pm, September 21, 2023Olympique de Marseille is going through a deep crisis. In recent days, OM has lost its coach Marcelino and President Longoria has withdrawn from the management of the club. In a statement, Franck McCourt, owner of the club, supports Pablo Longoria and announces "that a profound change" is now necessary in Marseille.
The American owner of Marseille, Frank McCourt on Thursday gave his support to the president of the club Pablo Longoria, whose groups of supporters are demanding the departure, and said that a "profound change" was "necessary" to allow the development of the club. According to Frank McCourt, Monday's meeting between the management of OM and representatives of supporters' groups "turned into an alarming demonstration of aggression, the members of the OM Executive Board having been the subject of threats of violence."
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"I strongly support Pablo Longoria"
"In the face of this situation, I strongly support Pablo Longoria," he wrote in a statement. On Monday evening, a long-planned meeting between representatives of OM supporters' groups and the four main leaders of the club was held in an extremely tense atmosphere.
"I was able to talk for two minutes, then I was cut off and it got out of hand very quickly... We were told: 'Resign all four (Longoria, football director Javier Ribalta, general manager Pedro Iriondo and chief financial officer Stéphane Tessier), otherwise it's war," Longoria said Thursday in an interview with La Provence. In the hours following this meeting, all the management of OM took a step back and none of the main leaders of the club is present in Amsterdam, where the Provencal club will face this Thursday Ajax. Coach Marcelino, a close friend of Longoria, has left the club.
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"The situation that occurred on Monday and led us to the resignation of Marcelino and his staff is unacceptable and, unfortunately, it is not the only example of behaviour that goes against the mission of our club," McCourt said in a statement. "Our goal is to win on the pitch, to bring people together and inspire the people of Marseille. Monday's incident is just one of many that undermine the foundations and proper functioning of the club, and make it much more difficult to achieve our goals."
"Our management of OM has taught us that profound change is needed to give the club a real chance to develop unhindered in the long term. This change requires strong collective support, inside and outside OM," said Frank McCourt.