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AC Avignon, the new Clochermerle of amateur football

Training balls
Photo Philippe Le Brech

With two presidents who are torn apart, AC Avignon is on the edge of the abyss. The hour is serious for the club of Vaucluse which risks an exclusion.

This Monday, the Avignon court was dealing with the case of the city’s football club and the internal war for the presidency. Because after the surrealist general meeting which took place on Saturday, in the premises of the District, nothing is settled. The Mediterranean League is starting to get impatient and the specter of the exclusion of all young teams from the regional championships hangs over AC Avignon.

But how did we get here? On November 3, Jean-Christophe Maignaud wanted to leave the presidency of the association. He proposed Alexandre Bressy, who had already been a manager at Avignon Foot 84 in 2009-2010 then Le Pontet-Avignon in 2014-2015. This entrepreneur then explained to The Echo of Tuesday what “I don’t miss the ideas, the challenge is exciting, it will require time for reflection, additional organization and resources”.

AC Avignon has an elected president… but without the required seniority

Attractive on paper. But the former president had forgotten that the statutes of the association imposed a minimum of six months seniority to join the steering committee. Six of the sixteen members, including the new president, were therefore not eligible. Then the latter decided to dismiss Christophe Catelain, general manager of the club and coach of the women’s team (Regional 1). He reproached him for his imposing salary (2200 euros monthly) but also for a sling against him with other members of the steering committee.

In January, members of the steering committee elect Sabine Arnoux as president. The minutes will even be filed with the Prefecture, which makes her the president of AC Avignon in the eyes of the State services. But war was declared between the two parties. Alerted by this incongruous situation, the Mediterranean League asked the District of Grand-Vaucluse to organize new elections before April 30. But the deadline has been constantly pushed back.

No conciliation possible before the Olympic Committee

Each of the two camps has its Facebook page, Future Club Avignonnais for the pros Sabine Arnoux and AC Avignon Official Account for the pros Alexandre Bressy. It is on the latter that confidential correspondence has been published, “including an email sent by the District Grand Vaucluse” as recalled by the disciplinary commission of the departmental body. Seized by its opponent, it suspended Alexandre Bressy for five months. A penalty increased to six months on appeal.

A conciliation between the two parties took place before the Departmental Olympic and Sports Committee (CDOS) in early May. In vain since “the conciliator was unable to find an agreement likely to put a definitive end to the dispute”. However, a constraint was imposed. “Regarding the governance of the Avenir Club Avignonnais club, the conciliator requests that an extraordinary general meeting be organized. This meeting must take place before June 30, 2022 as requested by the Mediterranean Football League. »

The general assembly disturbed in the premises of the District

Scheduled for Saturday morning in the District of Grand-Vaucluse, this general assembly of AC Avignon could not take place. “More than an hour before the start, people from Alexandre Bressy’s list were in front of the District headquarters and then they entered, in particular by jostling the four security guards planned for the occasion” explains a witness to us. Those close to the president also criticized that the proxies were not taken into account, as provided for in the statutes of the association, but the District – commissioned to organize this GA – had chosen “to refuse them because of the deleterious atmosphere which reigns within the club”.

There was therefore no vote. And the club finds itself once again at an impasse three days before the end of the ultimatum imposed by the Mediterranean League. The summary before the court this morning will perhaps provide some clarification for a club whose future has darkened. But the result of the summary will not be returned before August 8! The League and the District will nevertheless have to make a decision this week for the immediate future of AC Avignon and its 700 licensees.

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