The president has strongly denied any intention to sell the club from American shareholder Frank McCourt.
If, on the sporting level, the season of OM, the runner-up of the Parisian leader before the suspension of the championship at the beginning of March, marked a real improvement in the trajectory of the club, on the economic level, the situation continues to worry. In the sights of UEFA and financial fair play (suspended since early April due to the health crisis) which point the finger at deficit accounts (73 million euros in 2017-2018 and 91 million euros in 2018-2019 according to the DNCG) forcing it to an austerity cure, the Marseille club is taking the brunt of the shock of the stopping of competitions and the suspension of the payment of TV rights by broadcasters.
It was enough for rumors of sale to arise in recent days. On the occasion of a direct broadcast on his YouTube channel, freelance and investigative journalist Romain Molina assured that Frank McCourt, the American owner, had “officially” put the club on the market (at 14”06 on the video below): “What I can say about Olympique de Marseille is that it’s officially on sale! And I say it again, I can say it from multiple sources. The first who dares to pretend the opposite that Marseille today, that McCourt does not want to sell: he is a liar. (,,,) Afterwards, will he find a taker? I do not know. But they want to separate from the Marseille club. ”
An announcement that had the effect of a small bomb in the middle of Marseille football but this Wednesday, Jacques-Henri Eyraud made a point on the subject to deny this information in L’Equipe. “Frank is an investor exceptional and the rumors about the sale of the club are fake news. So much the worse for those who dream of it at night, ”decided the president of OM.
The health crisis comes at the worst time for OM
The right-hand man of the American billionaire however conceded with the daily newspaper that the crisis of the coronavirus fell at the worst moment for OM, in a precarious situation financially. “The difficult situation you describe is linked to phase 1 of our project, which resulted in massive investment in the revival of this club, the improvement of our infrastructure, the forced revival of our training. The club required an extremely large capital injection. Thanks to Frank’s contribution, we changed the profile of this club, in its structure and in its results. Financial balance and economic sustainability are now essential objectives of our second phase of the project, financial fair play or not. Obviously, this virus arrives at the wrong time since we were on a very good dynamic sporting, international, etc “, added the leader who wishes to set up” an emergency plan to cross the crisis “in a sector which he judges “Disaster victims such as transport, catering, hotels, events and culture”.