Nice - Marseille
August 23, 2021
OGC Nice statement
OGC Nice, in association with its majority shareholders, and via the voice of its president Jean-Pierre Rivère labelled the bottle-throwing incidents in the derby as ‘unacceptable’ when speaking at the post-match press conference and also in front of fans in the Southern stand. Any so-called supporters found guilty of involvement in these incidents deserve the harshest of penalities.
The Populaire Sud supporters group, via its representatives who met with Jean-Pierre Rivère and Julien Fournier on Monday to discuss the incidents, also roundly condemned those involved.
Faced with an ever-growing number of incidents of projectiles being thrown in stadia in France and internationally, OGC Nice reiterates that it has already raised the issue with Allianz Riviera management about the need to install protective netting in certain sections of the stadium. The club even beyond its role as a rental client by agreeing to finance the installation of said netting when confronted by the apathy of stadium management over the past two years. The club now expects action to be taken in briefest of delays.
Concerning the pitch invasion, and after retracing the exact chronology of events, OGC Nice has confirmed its judgement of the role played by the Marseille club. Olympique de Marseille players, coach, staff, directors and security personnel were constant catalysts to events throughout the evening. It was the responsibility of those in prominent positions, such as Les Aiglons players and Christophe Galtier to try and calm the situation as much as possible, which is what they did.
While nothing can excuse the actions of a few individuals guilty of throwing bottles onto the pitch, there is no doubt that it was the attitude and actions of several members of Olympique de Marseille that saw the incident escalate out of control. First of all, two experienced members of the OM playing staff lost control and threw projectiles directly into the nearby crowd of spectators, then one of Jorge Sampaoli assistant coaches crossed the field to attack and knock out a supporter, who of course should not have been there, but nevertheless remains in hospital. Justin Kluivert and Jean-Clair Todibo were then both gratuitously attacked by a member of the Marseille security personnel. One should not overlook the provocative actions of several Marseille players in the first half which only added to tensions around the stadium. OGC Nice strongly condemns all these actions that were decisive factors in escalation of these terrible incidents.