For Olympique Lyonnais’s future shareholder, John Textor, to finish 8th as in 2022, “it would be terrible”

His name and his almost explicit takeover of Olympique Lyonnais were surprising. John Textor, an unknown player in the football world, will take over the Rhone club after a buyout process that will see him own 90% of the club’s shares. Until then quite discreet about his style and his intentions around OL, he spoke Monday in an interview with L’Equipe, which shows a colorful character. But who hasn’t taken on the adventure of doing something extra.

Textor thus reveals that he had wanted to invest in France but was unaware that Lyon could be for sale, rather than thinking 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 clubs, with one of the best academies and also a diversity of things that minimize 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 mom always told me not to talk about money” he laughs – the idea of ​​​​being also a sporting stronghold has found its way. For this he has his method: trust the men already installed and bring his “love for 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 sport daily. There isn’t one person I identified that could come. Not one. Historically, I don’t like running companies, I’m like the disruptive, rebellious crazy uncle. I like to think about 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 be running the business, but he’s the one who sometimes comes up with good ideas.

A new model with Yankee sauce

With his good ideas, John Textor hopes they will get him sporty high. “Return to C1“First of all.”It would be terrible to finish 8th“Just like last season, he admits. Then.”why not” come to Paris Saint-Germain, whose model he recreated, especially for his academy launched a few years ago in the United States. “Paris came to Florida with this stupid PSG Academy program where everyone put on the jerseys. The people at PSG came and created this program, a license, and they told me that no kid would go to PSG. And I thought, why? Why would you say that, come to Florida where there are Latinos and declare that not one of these kids will be on the team?

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To compete with the Parisian giant and the funds of QSI, John Textor sweeps away the fantasy of a fortune that some herald as staggering. The businessman wants to bring the American vision to sports in order to generate extra profit on the already existing model and thus overtake 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, that is where we can find new resources. There are facial recognition apps that make more money in six weeks than a club makes in a year. We don’t make money with a classic football club, but with a concept of sports entertainment. And the supporters guarantee the club.

Supporters he will have to convince, while ties to Gones’ attitude have stretched further and further in recent years. Before aiming for the top of the standings, it would already be a first win.

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