October 26, 2016
€121,500 raised for the victims
In the face of terror, the football community rallied together. The auction of commemorative jerseys in tribute to the victims of the 14 July terror attack, organised by OGC Nice, raised €121,500 for the 'Promenade des Anges' charity, to help the families of the victims.
"I am very moved by this show of support. It proves that we must have faith in humanity. When the heart speaks, it’s just as strong as a match of football." Invited to introduce and conclude the evening, Jean-Pierre Rivère struggled to suppress his emotions in front of the overwhelming show of solidarity; a sign of support and resistance.
Whether it was long-serving partners of the club, former players and chairmen, opposition clubs, the LFP: everyone stood together in the face of this barbaric act. The evening was dedicated to helping treat wounds that will never fully heal, to think, more than ever, of the 86 victims that lost their lives on the Promenade des Anglais and to help their families rebuild.
The pain will never fully go away, but it was heart-warming to see such a strong show of solidarity from so many different elements of the society. So many hearts 'red with hope, and black in mourning' declared Vincent Delhomel-Desmaret, secretary general of the Promenade des Anges charity, who choked back the tears as he took to the floor.
Hearts that symbolise a moment, a day that everyone wishes had never happened, but will forever remain a part of the city’s history.
The generosity of André Boïs
To fight against the darkness, those present raised their voices to show support as the auction got underway.
On the Rue Gioffredo, the auction house offered its services free of charge in another strong show of unity. "I am not used to working charity auctions," explained auctioneer Patrick Rannou-Cassegrain. "But I am from Nice and like everyone from this city, I feel so strongly about this cause." Everyone was ready, in the auction house, at the other end of telephone lines or in front of their computers. The auction began at 19:30. Ready to make a difference.
Divided in lots of two (one Nice shirt and one Rennes shirt), the bidding was fast and furious. The prices quickly climbed, illustrating the solidarity of the Rouge et Noir community with those so cruelly, unfairly departed.
The virtuoso Hatem Ben Arfa bought the shirts of Cardinale and Diakhaby for €3,000, Jérémy Pied picked up those of Seri and Said for €4,000, the Mutuelles du Soleil – traditional club partner – successfully bid for Bosetti and André, the two players that hail from Nice both played in that first match of the season, along with Donis and Costil for a total of €14,700.
The playing shirts of the last three OGCN recruits of the summer, Dante, Belhanda and Balotelli were also integrated into the auction to ensure a maximum of interest. Former Chairman André Boïs bought Super Mario’s shirt for €11,100 euros. It was the highest successful bid of the evening.
"Nothing will ever erase what happened, but if we can offer a little joy, a little happiness to the people of Nice, that’s important," concluded current chairman Rivère.
OGC Nice to thank the following for their generosity: Digital Vision, Dalkia, Mutuelles du Soleil, Remanence, Cikta, Eurovia, Transport Blanchi, Ruff and Associates, former players Hatem Ben Arfa and Jérémy Pied, the Montpellier HSC football club, the chairman André Boïs, the LFP and all the other buyers who wish to remain anonymous.
The club also thanks Stade Rennais Football Club, who have been exemplary since the events launch, the Hôtel des Ventes de Nice, the Comback Agency and the Club’s sponsors (Mutuelles du Soleil, Pizzorno, the City of Nice, the Métropole NCA and Winamax (all of whom accepted to not appear on the Club’s jersey in Week 1 of the season) who enabled this auction to take place.