December 20, 2016
Historic reward for Le Gym
OGC Nice has been honoured by France Football as 2016 draws to a close. The Rouge et Noir have been awarded the Prix Orange, an honour handed out by journalists every year since 1982 to the party who has 'managed, in the course of the year, to communicate and collaborate the best'. Nice's winning also has the distinction of having spurred the adaptation of this traditionally individual award to a collective one.
"For the first time, it's not an individual receiving the award, but rather an entire club - OGC Nice - for the totality of their work." In the day's issue of France Football, Patrick Sowden summarised in his direct manner the key points through which Le Gym was chosen for the award. A distinction "that recognises the excellent work done by the club," according to Virginie Rossetti, drawing on the DNA of the institution founded in 1904.
The club has been built over the years on closeness and an unbreakable familial bond, creating "a club unlike the others," according to the director of communication. "It's a reward for the work put in on a daily basis and applied to the smallest details by every element of the club in order to convey the best possible image. Our leitmotiv has always been to cultivate our differences and make them our strengths. This club has a soul; it's unique."
"If these days Nice has a reputation as an open, friendly club, that's because it has stayed open and friendly on all levels," explained the journalist. "Communication is also about how you are every day, even in saying 'hello'," underlined president Rivère.
This prize, awarded two years after the Prix Philippe-Séguin recognised OGC Nice's civil engagement, comes at the end of a year that will remain etched in the heart and spirit of the club and the city. A year in which tears of joy were mixed with unimaginable grief.
The last 365 days saw Les Aiglons finish in fourth place in Ligue 1, make their return to Europe and then win the honorific title of Autumn Champions, but they also saw the very worst of times. The unspeakable attack on July 14 on the Promenade des Anglais took the lives of 86 people, and shortly afterwards, the much-missed René Marsiglia passed away. The events reinforced, through joy but also heartbreak, the ties that bind the club, the city and the people of Nice, forever united through the best and the worst.
So 2016 ends on a high note. "Because they can fight for the title without getting too big for their boots, without losing view of where they came from and all the while maintaining their links with their history and their city," France Football concisely concluded.