The mayor of Marseille, Benoît Payan, announced Thursday in a daily interview Provence that one of the esplanades leading to the Stade Vélodrome would now bear the name of Bernard Tapie, former businessman, politician and president of OM, who died in 2021.
“The large esplanade which leads to the Vélodrome stadium, on the Jean-Bouin side (boulevard Michelet, editor’s note) will bear the name of Bernard Tapie. We mark in marble his name, his passage, his contribution to the history of this club, ”explained the various left mayor of the city.
A “later” inauguration
Questioned by AFP, the municipality indicated that the inauguration of this Bernard Tapie esplanade would take place “later”. The announcement comes on the eve of the 30th anniversary of OM’s victory in the Champions League on May 26, 1993.
Bernard Tapie was then the owner and president of OM, and this feat has remained unique in the history of French football to this day. A few months later, OM had however been demoted to the second division as a result of the VA-OM affair, the corruption scandal which precipitated the fall of Tapie, then imprisoned.
In the interview given to Provence, Benoît Payan explains about this decision that it was “our duty and our responsibility to do so”. “It is not a question here of talking about the politician or businessman, who was complex and out of the ordinary. I retain the image of the sports leader,” he said.
“The fans nicknamed him the Boss because he carried OM to the top of Europe. Today it is in our history,” he added. Marseille will celebrate the 30th anniversary of its C1 victory on Friday with a celebration at the Hôtel de Ville and a replay of the 1993 final on a giant screen.