Interview

Jacques-Henri Eyraud discusses the measures taken by OM

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Olympique de Marseille's President details the measures taken by the Club following the suspension of Ligue 1 Conforama matches.

After the suspension of Ligue 1 Conforama matches, the President of Olympique de Marseille answered questions on the measures taken by Olympique de Marseille, what it means for the First Team, the academy and the women's teams, and the management of the COVID-19 pandemic.
 

President, what measures are being taken by the Club during this COVID-19 crisis?

Today, the whole of French football's unity must be illustrated. We must do everything to ensure that this crisis passes as quickly as possible. To do this, we must all take on precautionary measures, including the football club. I intend to comply with the requests made by the public authorities and by the President of the Republic last night. We have set up a new organization, we allowed a large number of employees to tele-work, to organize very limited activities within La Commanderie, to limit access to outsiders and to suppliers. For the sporting building, each person to enter will have to have their temperature taken for feverish conditions. These are necessary measures which must enable us to get through this crisis as well as possible.

 

How will the First Team proceed?
For the time being, we have decided to continue training sessions for the First Team. For the moment, and over the coming week, there will be 4 sessions. We will give players longer weekends so that they can rest, but at the moment we are continuing training and we will revisit this decision according to the evolution of the situation and also what will happen at the European level. But for now, the training will be maintained.

 

What about the academy and the women's teams?
The French Football Federation has announced the suspension of all academy-level league games, from reserve teams to youth football teams. We also made the decision to close the training center. Until further notice, no training will be organized for our youth.

 

Do we know how long these measures are planned for, will there be updates regularly made?

I think we have to be very vigilant about the evolution of the situation. It is likely that one of us, one day, will test positive, and therefore this will lead to the triggering of another protocol to be implemented. So far we are really taking all measures to be vigilant. As for the league, it is certain that the top priority is the health crisis which affects us all, and football must take second place, this is obvious. Afterwards, I think, for many players, there is the desire to finish this league, but when? Are matches to be postponed when the calendar is coming to an end? There are uncertainties, but if we can finish it, I think it's something everyone will want to do.

 

There is an important meeting on Tuesday at UEFA, what do you expect?

Tuesday's meeting at UEFA is very important as we will await two decisions:

  • The first on the European Championships, will they be played in the summer or not?
  • And the second in the Champions League and the Europa League, will the matches be played in these two competitions or not?

If the European Championships were to be canceled and postponed, for example, to next year, this would free up a certain number of dates for us to recover and replay the league games which are suspended at the moment and certainly will be for a few more weeks. We will be very attentive to what happens next Tuesday, and a League board of directors meeting is also planned, in which I will participate in, to see what decisions will be taken as soon as we know what UEFA has decided to do.