Marseille mourns Bernard Tapie: the ‘Berlusconi of France’ who knocked out Sacchi and Capello’s AC Milan | First page

Marseille mourns Bernard Tapie: the ‘Berlusconi of France’ who knocked out Sacchi and Capello’s AC Milan | First page
Marseille mourns Bernard Tapie: the ‘Berlusconi of France’ who knocked out Sacchi and Capello’s AC Milan | First page
French football loses one of its most important and characteristic characters in the modern era. At the age of 78, Bernard Tapie passed away after a battle with cancer, histrionic president ofOlympique Marseille between 1986 and 1994. Successful businessman who exploded in the early Eighties after starting to work as a television salesman, he is thanks to the small screen that becomes a man of great fame in his country, retracing in some the footsteps of Silvio Berlusconi, with whom he will meet several times in the course of his life, even on the football fields.

WHAT A CHALLENGE WITH AC MILAN – Tapie is in fact the president who was able to make OM great, leading him to play the European Cup / Champions League final twice and to win the coveted international trophy in 1993, beating Fabio Capello’s AC Milan, in Munich. Two years before, the French team – which included stars of the caliber of Chris Waddle, Abedi Pelé and Jean-Pierre Papin (future AC Milan) – he had eliminated the men trained by Arrigo Sacchi at the quarter-finals, effectively putting an end to the cycle of the technician from Fusignano, thanks also to what happened in the renamed “night of the street lamps”. Under a goal after the 1-1 draw at San Siro, Milan left the field, on the recommendation of Adriano Galliani, after a sudden drop in the electrical voltage of the spotlights, resulting in a 3-0 defeat and exclusion of the Italian club for the following year from European competitions.

THE DECLINE – Winning and popular character, Bernard Tapie was however also and above all a very controversial man in France and beyond. Thanks to his achievements in the world of sport – he also founded a cycling team, the Vie Claire, with which Bernard Hinault won his last Tour de France in 1985 – he also embarked on a short but intense political career, also becoming a minister under the Mitterand presidency. Here, however, his decline will begin, caused by the sentence for trying to combine a league match between his Marseille and Valenciennes, which ended his arrest in 1996. This fact, combined with the case of the resale of the Adidas group – a court case that ended only a few months ago – puts an end to the adventure of the successful political and entrepreneur Tapie.

THE ILLNESS – In 2017, the former Marseille number one reveals to the world that he is battling stomach cancer, which will force him to surrender four years later. In his life he did not miss anything, even an experience as a singer with the stage name of Bernard Tapy, and his name remains inextricably linked to OM and its fans, who have seen and remembered him even in recent times as a landmark in the history of the club despite its Parisian origins and the sad conclusion of his adventure as president.

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