If the LFP on Thursday recorded the passage of Ligue 1 from 20 to 18 clubs from the 2023-2024 season, the debates between presidents were sometimes stormy. This was particularly the case between the bosses of Reims and PSG, Jean-Pierre Caillot and Nasser Al-Khelaïfi.
The numbers are sometimes misleading. Thursday, it is with more than 97% of the votes that the clubs of Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 voted in favor of a tightening of Ligue 1 from 20 to 18 clubs. The change made by the general assembly of the LFP will be effective from the 2023-2024 season. If this is a true plebiscite, all the presidents were not on the same wavelength.
While FC Metz voted against, Jean-Pierre Caillot, president of Reims and of the Ligue 1 College (elected by the club presidents), was not initially in favor of a Ligue 1 with 18 clubs.
“I have always been a supporter of a Ligue 1 with 20 clubs because I think that philosophically, for the territories and the audiences, it was something important, said the Champagne leader in an interview with France Info on Friday. . But I left my hat as president of the Stade de Reims to align myself with the will of my colleagues who was to increase the championship to 18. We are in a crisis and we must take the opportunity to reinvent ourselves. broadcasters, from a number of clubs, this subject was becoming necessary. My role was not to impose my ideas but to collect those of my colleagues and to ensure that there is a common consensus. “
“We are not in the world of Care Bears”
During the debates on this sensitive subject, Jean-Pierre Caillot notably clung with his PSG counterpart Nasser Al-Khelaïfi, as revealed by L’Equipe. Information that the boss of the Stade de Reims confirms. “You know, we are not in the world of Care Bears. When we discuss and fight in the general interest, we expose ourselves to people who want faster results. Nasser (Al-Khelaïfi) embodied, with a certain number of clubs, the desire to go very quickly to 18. They have good reasons but I, as president of the college and not of the Stade de Reims, I defend the general interest. the spokesperson for the majority of clubs who wanted a little time, “concludes the boss of Reims.