Story of a crazy day at the FFR after the resignation of Bernard Laporte


Story of a crazy day at the FFR after the resignation of Bernard Laporte
Written by madishthestylebar

When French rugby makes its cinema, Hollywood screenwriters can go get dressed. Indeed, on Friday, the wonderful world of the oval ball had another crazy day, one that remains engraved in the annals of history with a capital H (like Hahaha). While the steering committee of the French Rugby Federation met in Marcoussis on Friday morning to decide on the destinies of French rugby, after the “no” vote in the referendum supposed to validate or not the appointment of Patrick Buisson as deputy president, following the conviction of Bernard Laporte, he had two options in front of him.

The first, under article 15 of the texts of the FFR, consisted of a general resignation from the management committee and the holding of new general elections. This was the option favored by the Minister of Sports, Amélie Oudéa-Castéra, present at the start of the “codir” Friday morning. “I told them that the way that seemed to me the clearest, the clearest, the most legitimate and also the fastest, because we all want this crisis to be able to come to an end and be resolved quickly now, was the way of a resignation from the management committee,” she explained when she left Marcoussis. It was also the option that went in the direction of the result of the referendum at the start of the week, during which the approximately 1,500 amateur clubs said “no” to Buisson.

The second, under article 21, was that of maintaining the team in place, with the appointment of an interim president until the new General Assembly in June, when the management committee will appoint from among its members the future president or the future president of the FFR until 2024. Reason, not to say honor and dignity, would have liked the members of the steering committee to opt for the first option. This would then have made it possible, through new general elections, to restore full legitimacy to the new team elected to prepare for the organization of the World Cup. As such, the announcement of the resignation of Bernard Laporte, upstream of the “codir”, after a last last telephone call from “Crazy Bernie” in recent days to convince amateur clubs to give their support to his foal Patrick Buisson, seemed to be going in the right direction.

“It’s a form of putsch”

But that was before. Before Florian Grill, leader of the opposition to the Laporte clan and member of the steering committee, slams the door with his supporters and announces their collective resignation. In question, the decision of the majority to line up behind the opinion of Serge Simon and to cling at all costs to what remains of their power. Hair in the wind when he left Marcoussis, Florian Grill was disappointed.

“They want to decide among themselves on an interim president, from the federal office, who will have to manage without legitimacy, without going through the ballot box, the federation until June. It is not respectful of the vote which was expressed by the referendum, he explains. I regret that the word of the clubs is not respected. It is a form of putsch, a denial of democracy. I thought that the elected members of the steering committee would have more of a sense of responsibility and of the honor of rugby. I am very disappointed for rugby with this attitude which lacks dignity. Reached by telephone at the end of the day, the president of Ovale Ensemble justifies the collective resignation of the opposition.

“The proposed solution led to an impasse: an interim president and an election in June of the sole president. In the best case, we had a cohabitation, which would have been deadly a few months before the World Cup, he assures us. The right decision, and we are happy that the NRL followed, was to resign. In these conditions, we preferred to put them before their responsibilities. They prefer to defend their small privileges. We weren’t going to fall into that trap. »

For their part, the supporters of Laporte do not see at all where the problem is. “We respect our values” declared the vice-president of the FFR and president of the Occitanie league, Alain Doucet, to our colleagues from The Team. Before outright taking out the violins, evoking with tremolos in their voices these “small clubs which train in the cold to prepare for their championships” and which “expect from us that we assure them of an end to the season worthy of their commitments, of their confidence. It’s funny, we just thought that this confidence had been withdrawn from them after the referendum on Thursday. But it must be an optical illusion.

The Minister has not yet spoken

Contacted by 20 minutes, the Ministry of Sports has not yet responded to our requests. Visiting Saine Saint-Denis on Friday afternoon, as part of the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris, Amélie Oudéa-Castéra has not yet officially spoken to react to the decision of the steering committee not to listen to her recommendations. We can easily imagine the anger that must be hers, she who continues to navigate from one federation to another to manage the various scandals that have fallen as in Gravelotte in recent weeks.

But she may regret the choice of the steering committee, she has no power over it. Eight months from the World Cup, here we are with a management team that no one wants (except her) and which will appoint one of its members as quietly as possible to preside over the Fed until 2024, since all the other members resigned. And Florian Grill to conclude: “It is a besieged fortress which has just carried out a hold-up on French rugby”. Hollywood definitely does not come close to us.

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