Ligue 1: a match at 19 million euros between Bielsa and LOSC

The trial between Marcelo Bielsa and the LOSC is taking place this Friday before the industrial tribunal. The Argentine technician hopes to touch nearly 19 million euros after his dismissal by the northern club in December 2017.

Still in the race to win the Ligue 1 title, Lille is facing another major duel this Friday. The northern club is opposed to Marcelo Bielsa before the industrial tribunal. The trial expected since June 2020 will finally take place and the judicial soap opera could finally come to an end, a little more than three years after the dismissal of the Argentine technician by the Mastiffs.

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A “parachute clause” at the heart of the issues

Arrived in Lille in the summer of 2017 to embody the sporting project led by Gerard Lopez and Luis Campos, Marcelo Bielsa was finally dismissed in November following a series of poor results (3 matches won, 3 draws, 7 defeats) and a sad twelfth place in Ligue 1.

Despite a significant recruitment, the current coach of Leeds (10th in the Premier League) had failed to impose his paw on the team and was then dismissed for serious misconduct in December 2017. Since then, “El Loco” claims nearly of 18.8 million euros to LOSC for a dismissal deemed unfair.

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To defend its cause, the clan of the 65-year-old Argentinian relies on a “parachute clause” included in a pre-contract signed in February 2017. According to this, the former Lille coach could claim to touch the ‘full remaining salaries in the event of a hasty departure, whatever the reasons for his eviction and termination of his contract.

Problem, the only document approved by the LFP, whose legal commission was deemed incompetent, is the contract signed by Marcelo Bielsa with Lille and it does not include the said clause. The stake of this legal conflict thus revolves around the value of the pre-contract signed between the two parties.

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Lille won the first battle

Before the resolution of this industrial tribunal for his dismissal, Marcelo Bielsa has already attacked the LOSC asking to put the club in suspension of payment for non-payment of his wages. But the Lille trade court had ruled in favor of the Mastiffs in a first verdict in March 2018. The Argentine coach was even ordered to pay 300,000 euros in damages to the northern club for abusive proceedings.

After having appealed against this conviction, “El Loco” therefore intends to reverse the trend and win its legal war, while the LOSC side is claiming 560,000 euros for abusive proceedings. In the absence of Marcelo Bielsa, blocked in England due to the coronavirus epidemic and health measures, his lawyer Me Benjamin Cabagno will try to win his case. The verdict rendered this Friday by the industrial tribunal council could still give rise to appeal proceedings and further extend the legal fight between the Argentine coach and Lille.

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Jean-Guy Lebreton RMC Sport journalist

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