Football: relegation, the possible draft in N2, the future of the club and its own, finances, criticism… updates from OAC president Didier Bilange

Football: relegation, the possible draft in N2, the future of the club and its own, finances, criticism... updates from OAC president Didier Bilange

Didier Bilange et Philippe Mallaroni dans les locaux de JubilIntérim, ce lundi midi. Midi Libre – ALEXIS BETHUNE

National 3… or 2/The OAC off-season. Midi Libre asked Didier Bilange for a truth interview. L’Alésien, president of the club for 15 years already, responded favorably. Here are his clarifications.

This Monday, Didier Bilange took his time, as he takes his money for the OAC, to discuss the past, present and future of the Cévennes club, which he has already chaired fifteen years (2009). A 2 h 15 (!) interview in the Alesian premises of his company, Jubil Intérim, with the Oacian general manager, Philippe Mallaroni. And the duo had a lot to say…

This Monday, June 10, are you still analyzing and incomprehension of the past season, or already totally focused on the next ?

We have been looking towards next season for a long time now. We have been working on recruitment for three months. On May 28, we went to the DNCG, which validated two forecast budgets for us, one of 1.5 million euros; if we evolve into National 3 and one of 1.8 M€ (equivalent to that of this season, Editor's note) if one is drafted into National 2.

Should we believe in a draft in National 2 ?

The DNCG told us that the date would be July 15. Today, there is a chance that you will be drafted. There is a repechage order, and we are 3rd (behind Haguenau, worst 9th and Saumur, best 10th) as the second best 10th. Last year, there were four drafted in N2. A club president even called us to ask if we would accept a draft… He is behind us on the list of draftable potentials.

I'll tell you: I'd be surprised if we weren't drafted! There are many clubs which are in great financial difficulty. Which is not our case: our two budgets were validated without any restrictions, whereas we were almost accused of being insolvent not long ago! And we received congratulations from the DNCG, the same body that had imposed 5 penalty points on us a year and a half ago.

With us, between the 1st and 5th of the month, everything is paid. The players know it, and it attracts. We are not the richest (Cannes would have 6 million euros), but we are not the poorest, and the club is healthy.

The club is healthy, but it has been relegated sportingly. How do you explain this descent ?

This failure was analyzed technically. There must have been mistakes. We gathered the staff, expressed our dissatisfaction. It's not because we don't intervene on social networks that we haven't done it…hellip; It was a special season, with 5 or 6 runs per group, or more than a third of the championship. Then, the coach had the worst difficulties in fielding a typical team between suspensions and injuries. You will say: “we are making excuses”. No: we are looking for explanations.

The analysis is that we think that there was a lack of questioning and a relaxation of the players after the continuation of last season, which was considered as a feat. It was sometimes difficult to make some people aware of the level of commitment it took to perform and mingle with the top three. Afterwards, I do not accept that we say that we were wrong all along, and that nothing is going well in the club: we still made a 32nd final in the Coupe de France by winning consistently in Martigues which moves up to L2, and we beat the first two in the championship (Aubagne and Le Puy). We will have missed two victories. We finished 10th out of 14, and that’s what will perhaps save us.

What is Hakim Malek’s responsibility in this failed season ? Is he still the man for the job ?

If he is still there, it is because we think that this possible relegation is not his sole responsibility. For me, it even has potential that goes well beyond the N2. We are satisfied with the way he manages the team. I have a friend called Olivier Dall’Oglio, he is from Ales and we are the same age. And they have this same ability to get people to support a project.

Hakim is also a highly sought-after trainer. But he is under contract. We advocate questioning, not change for the sake of change.

There seems to be a problem with recruitment. Who will manage the transfer window, when it promises to be crucial and busy ?

First of all, all our players are professionals for me, because that's all they do. They are prohibited from working elsewhere. Some did not do their job well. We estimate that we have reached the end of a sporting cycle. We decided to make big changes, to reshuffle the cards.

We do not prohibit ourselves from changing 100% of the team. We didn’t change enough last year. It’s up to us to be better at recruiting. The coach defines profiles and the sports director (Jean-Marie Pasqualetti) sets out on the hunt. We work with a network of agents. And we have collaborators (the DS, or scouts, Editor's note) who will observe potential recruits in the stadiums. We tried to scout earlier this season, and to cross-check our criteria.

What will be the club's ambitions next season, whether in N3 or N2 ?

In N3, we will play the comeback. In L2, this will depend on our ability to implement our resources, and the support of our public and private partners. In our area, football and the OAC must be everyone’s business. In life, we succeed together and we lose alone. We are on the verge of a very good level, but to reach it, the OAC must be a real collective territorial adventure, without too many stowaways (sic).

To enable us to succeed, we would need to review our infrastructure, have dedicated synthetic pitches or an improved Pibarot stadium, particularly the boxes. If we want to return to the National one day, it doesn’t just depend on us.

Behind the scenes of the interview

The future: a new course ? Éfailure and course 2024, this year& eacute;e, while the club was aiming for the National. &Was it too ambitious ? "No, we weren’ét that far away that ça, replies the Bilange-Mallaroni duo.We are going to set a new one, for 2026 or 2027, with the objective of mixing with others. the fight for accession to National. It’s obvious that we need to set course to move forward."

L’hope Aubagne. "Look at Aubagne, specify the two men. The club wasé relegated last year, then drafted. And there he goes up to National!" And if Alès had the same destiny ?

Bilange, until’à when ?"I'll be there next season, but I don't want to carry the club alone à very long term. I am perhaps one of the least passionate presidents but I am one of the most committed, and responsible and concerned about this commitment. This season is the one where I have had the most questions since I joined the company. the OAC in 2007. Those who fall into populism do not realize the time and energy spent. On social networks, there are some who would like everyone to be fired. at the club…"

Franco and transfer window. There remains à Currently three players under contract (until June 2025) & l’OAC : goalkeeper Eric Moreau, Wilfried Baana Jaba and Lucas Franco. "We saw Lucas on Friday. He carries all the values ​​of the club and we have the will to do so. to keep it." As for the first recruits, "there are negotiations in course but no reinforcement has been provided. act&eac; for now".

Resumption. Players will resume training on Monday, July 8.

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