France Bleu Gironde: How do you feel after the Girondins de Bordeaux season?
Said Ennjimi: So a little bitter, like many supporters and lovers of the Girondins de Bordeaux. Limoges, the city where I grew up, is very close to the Girondins, it was a little bit our local club and therefore bitter, because it’s difficult to live with, and then, secondly, with regard to my position as President of the League, it is more delicate not to have an elite club because we need an elite club to be able to attract our best young people in a way, so that they can integrate the Girondins de Bordeaux insofar as they would have remained in Ligue1. When we like young people a little less, they tend to go to other professional clubs, other regions and we find them less afterwards for those who unfortunately do not have the chance to become professionals in our regional and national clubs. .
And your feelings about the passage in front of the DNCG on June 14?
Worried like everyone else. We are talking about tens of millions of euros. Some people talk about 20 million euros, others 40 million euros. What is certain is that the net situation, in other words the shareholders’ equity of the structure of the Girondins de Bordeaux must be in balance. Without wanting to say nonsense, the deficits have accumulated at least the last two years. We will have to show our credentials in a way, to the DNCG to be able to go back to Ligue 2. So yes, very clearly, the shareholders will have to put fresh money on the table to give credit to the DNCG. Will they be able to do it in such a short time, I hope so, we all hope so. It would be really catastrophic in the case of an additional demotion.
You talk about shareholders, more than a sporting spectacle, football has become a financial product. How do you live it?
It’s a fairly natural development from the piling up of financial commitments in the context of football. A football club today, which is quite paradoxical and almost abnormal, lives only by the exceptional. That is to say that his lifestyle, he can not balance it and he waits for the end of the season by selling players to be able to balance his lifestyle. This is what is abnormal if you will, within the framework of a logical management of a company. It is in this sense, if you want me to think it very important and relevant to have payroll limitation criteria so that a club can live from its means and not hope to sell at the end of the season. its good players. This would perhaps limit the desire of some of our leaders to want at all costs to find the rare pearl in order to be able to resell it for the most expensive possible, forgetting the sporting interest and perhaps too often deconstructing the workforce which, on the one hand year on year, are no longer satisfactory. And we are in a context of yo yo. Economics takes too much precedence over sport. This is what has become regrettable in football in recent years.
Do you have the feeling that Gérard Lopez is not necessarily welcome in the world of football in France?
I could not afford to give you an opinion since I have not had the opportunity to discuss with him since his arrival. It is true that he was most certainly very busy. So we just exchanged a few minutes, I rather have a relationship with Thomas Jacquemier, the general manager of the Girondins de Bordeaux. I regret it, but I also put myself in his place with a difficult finish in a difficult context. I prefer to talk about the future hoping that there is one of course.
It has often been said that Bordeaux is no longer refereed like a very high level team. When you have the feeling of arbitrating an institution, can that influence a little or not?
Referees are only men. That is to say that, by definition, we are always influenced. The training of high-level referees means that this share of influence is very low. But it’s true that it’s a bit easier, in quotes for clubs with powerful institutions, to be refereed in the best way possible rather than when you’re a little bit in trouble, so it also shows on the behavior of the players on the field, nervousness, annoyance. Finally, there are a whole host of things which mean that the more serene the club, the stronger the institution and the more details there will be which means that arbitration may weigh less on these clubs than on those who are in difficulty, as our Girondins de Bordeaux have been during this season in particular.
Are you in favor of sound systems for referees?
Yes, because it would on the one hand improve pedagogy in a world which, anyway, is sounded every second that passes with social networks, everything is known all the time and everywhere. So it would also be a good time if we could also evolve with this famous sound system for the referees. So pedagogy towards each other, calm can be more pronounced on the part of the players, but also can sometimes be a certain annoyance on the part of the referees, that also exists and finally, I hope, allow to the Professional Football League to improve its income. And the last meeting I was able to have with Vincent Labrune (Editor’s note: President of the LFP), since I was part of the working group on the evolution of the arbitration context, it was perhaps to have some financial fallout for our refereeing which would need it in terms of training, promotion, so that we have a few more referees on the grounds of amateur football. This is a subject that I take up with the Pro Football League.
Football is too often an outlet for the ills of our society, it still is too often for racism as in Gironde last Sunday. What are you doing against this scourge?
So you have to remember that we had around 60 difficult cases, including the one you mentioned out of 60,000 matches. So I will never stop repeating that football is not fundamentally violent, is not just the bad image that we would like to give it. That being said, there are cases that are inadmissible like the one you mention, and in our league for example, we decided to increase the penalties, that is to say to multiply the scale by two. I am going to discuss with the referees at the start of the season to ask them not to hesitate to systematically stop the matches, not at the request of the players, but at the request of the referees, so that this subject of racism, which he is also anti-white, anti-Arab or black and the Said that I am has absolutely no difficulty in telling you, so that we can stop this racism which hurts us a lot.
We learned that our consultant François Grenet was going to get closer to the New Aquitaine Football League
He’s a very good, very committed person. He is someone who also has the characteristic of being both a former renowned player and a rare closeness to amateur football, the volunteers who require a lot of benevolence. In fact, amateur clubs don’t ask for much and above all ask for kindness, a little closeness. When you’ve had a great career like François and you have the ability to approach them in a very simple way, it’s nice. It is absolutely essential that we have a few professional players, there is also Sophie Istillart, who is the former captain of the Girondines de Bordeaux whom I met recently so that we can have a panel of former pros who can give desire, dreams to our young children in particular, but also to the not so young. I hope it can also contribute to putting the old pros back in the spotlight. Because without professionalism, you can’t really build professionalism.
Are you missing former professionals from the volunteers, from the amateur world?
Absolutely. And I think it wasn’t really a strategy, which is really damaging. They want to get involved, but if we don’t reach out to them, if we don’t give them the opportunity to do so, it’s tricky. And François Grenet also has a certain institutional fiber. So I really hope that he joins the political concert if I can put it that way and I hope that he will demonstrate it to everyone, that he has the skills to be able to bring his expertise and his experience both at of the institution and at the level of the clubs of the youngest, in particular during the selection actions, but also also with our technicians, about thirty throughout the territory who too, I think, will be fond of hearing it tell his story and his way of seeing the game.