At Paris FC, like its president Pierre Ferracci, we still remain cautious despite the 7 point lead at the top of L2. But the CEO of the Alpha group who will spend part-time in the coming weeks to devote himself more to his club, already acknowledges considering all the scenarios. He reveals his return from a stay in Bahrain, a 20% shareholder, and delivers his plans for the renovation of the Charléty stadium.
How do you feel when you look at the leaderboard?
PIERRE FERRACCI. Even being average like Saturday in Dunkirk (1-0), we see that we have a quality and united squad. In my wildest dreams, I never imagined having 25 points after 10 games. It’s an exceptional start. I have the feeling that the wheel is turning, that all our efforts over the past several years are starting to pay off. I feel a mixture of pleasure, optimism but also realism. Without falling into euphoria, you have to know how to appreciate these moments.
“Paris FC is going through a kind of state of grace”
Considering your lead, are you starting to seriously consider a rise in L1?
December will be a busy month so I remain cautious and humble. We gave ourselves 3 years to go up. But we would be crazy not to play our card to the fullest this year. It is obvious that we want to stay where we are now. Paris FC is going through a kind of state of grace. We know he will stop one day. But we must take advantage of this period to build things around the club. Day after day, we gain credibility.
How does Bahrain view your results?
They follow us closely and are necessarily happy in terms of communication and our results. But we also calm them (smile) … With Fabrice Herrault (general manager), we have just made an express trip from last Sunday to Wednesday in Bahrain. We were able to meet King Hamad ben Issa Al Khalifa and his son, Prince Nasser ben Hamed Al-Khalifa who has been following us from the start. It’s easier to go there in our current position than it was last year. One of the purposes of this trip was to discuss with them a possible rise in L1. Things were already planned and obviously things can still accelerate. Bahrain are ready to go the extra mile in L1.
You announced the arrival of another foreign investor in December. Is it still relevant ?
It will certainly be shifted. The Covid slows down travel abroad. But despite the health crisis, our start to the season necessarily facilitates contacts. So I opened the field for negotiations. If we have the chance to go up to L1, it will not be the same entry price. But whatever happens, I will remain on the announced plan: foreign investors but also Ile-de-France to give a regional and national color to the capital. I will continue to be the majority.
In the event of a rise in L1 in May, would the club be ready?
We already have an L1 staff. With René (Girard), communication is fluid. I had never felt this serenity within the club. We will further improve our Orly center in the coming months. In terms of recruitment, Frédéric Hébert (the sports director) is already working on the two options, the L1 and the L2. In terms of financial, commercial and administrative structures, I have no worries. We will be able to adapt quickly. But you don’t have to do everything in two months. The major issue remains the problem of the stadium.
“I hope that when we will be in L1, the prospect of the renovation of Charléty will already be recorded”
Where are your discussions with the Paris City Hall?
We have good listening. The mayor of Paris understood that a second Parisian club was going to arrive… I am not asking for the moon, but things have to move. We want to stay in Charléty, even in L1. As long as we haven’t climbed, we know that nothing will be able to move. Everyone can see that we have taken a step forward and that my speeches have always been followed by action. Even if we remain cautious in our communication, we feel that there is a new enthusiasm and an expectation around Paris FC. I hope that when we will be in L1, the prospect of the renovation of Charléty will already be recorded. We need to find out quickly.
It is an issue that promises to be complex …
The most complicated thing is to convince all the players and occupants. Because in parallel with the contribution of communities, I do not think I have major difficulties in finding funding. Several hypotheses have already been studied. There will be a transition period. It is still too early to know if we will play in a stadium that is partially under construction or if we will have to find an intermediate solution. When you’re Paris FC, you’re used to juggling precarious conditions. If we have to play temporarily elsewhere, I want to stay in Paris. So there is only the Parc des Princes and Jean Bouin. In this case, we will have to find a temporary agreement with the occupants (Editor’s note: PSG and Stade Français) and the City of Paris.
Article original de: www.leparisien.fr