For the future shareholder of Olympique Lyonnais, John Textor, to finish 8th as in 2022, “it would be horrible”

For the future shareholder of Olympique Lyonnais, John Textor, to finish 8th as in 2022,

His name and his almost express takeover of Olympique Lyonnais were surprising. John Textor, an unknown player in football business, will take control of the Rhone club after a buyout process which will see him hold 90% of the club’s shares. Rather discreet until then about his style and his intentions around OL, he spoke in an interview given to L’Equipe on Monday, which reveals a colorful character. But who hasn’t embarked on the adventure just to do extras either.

Textor thus reveals that he had wanted to invest in France, but that he was unaware that Lyon could be for sale, thinking instead of a smaller club to do business with the three other clubs under his yoke, Crystal Palace, Botafogo and Molenbeek. However, the OL opportunity was too good to pass up. “I was surprised to see Pathé and IDG leave one of the best clubs, one of the best managed, with one of the best academies and in addition a diversity of business which minimizes the risk of football. I had to jump on it.

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John “the crazy uncle”

If his first ambition was financial – even if he refuses to talk about money, “my mother always told me not to talk about money” he laughs – the idea of ​​also being a sporting stronghold has made its way. For this, he has his method: trust the men already installed and bring his “love of football and financial resources“.

John Textor, Jean-Michel Aulas

Credit: Getty Images

Jean-Michel Aulas has a contract and the rest of the management remains in placehe assures the site of the sports daily. There is not a single person that I have identified who could come. Not one. Historically, I don’t like running companies, I’m like the disruptive, defiant crazy uncle. I like to think of the world in five years. I will call Jean-Michel and challenge him with new ideas. Then he will say to me: “John, it can work”, or not. The crazy uncle shouldn’t run the business, but he’s the one who sometimes comes up with good ideas.

A new model with Yankee sauce

His good ideas, John Textor hopes that they will take him high sportingly. “Return to C1” first of all. “It would be horrible to finish 8th“like last season he concedes. Then”why not” come up to Paris Saint-Germain, whose model he once again scratched, especially for his academy launched a few years ago in the United States. “Paris came to Florida with this stupid PSG Academy program, putting on everyone’s jerseys. The PSG people came and created this program, a license, and they told me that no child would go to PSG. And I thought: why? Why say that, come to Florida where there are Latinos and declare that not one of these children will be on the team?

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To be able to compete with the Parisian giant and the funds of QSI, John Textor sweeps away the fantasy of a fortune announced by some as mirobolant. The businessman wants to bring the American vision of sport to generate additional profits to the already existing model and thus catch up with the competition. “I don’t like the football model based on television, ticket sales and merchandising. I believe that the supporters are the essential value of a club, it is there that we can find new resources. There are facial recognition apps that in six weeks make more money than a club in a year. We don’t make money with a classic football club but we do with a concept of sports entertainment. And the supporters are the guarantors of the club.

Supporters that he will have to convince, while the links with the institution of Les Gones have continued to slacken in recent years. Before aiming for the top of the classification, it would already be a first victory.

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