Despite the sporting disappointment of the lack of a European qualification, the LOSC ends a very satisfactory season from a financial point of view. A performance given the state of the club when it resumed in January 2021.
“You have to understand where he is coming from. The club was in a state of bankruptcy, insolvent.” This sentiment said from inside the club sums up the state of mind of the LOSC shareholders almost 2 and a half years after taking over the club. Within the shareholder Merlyn Partners, we are very satisfied with the results of the club at the financial level. The huge debt left by Gérard Lopez of 370 million euros (210 million with financial institutions like Elliot or JP Morgan and almost 160 million with other entities), has been reduced considerably, by about two thirds.
The income generated by the championship title (not scheduled) and the honorable course in the Champions League have a lot to do. The salary is melted, from 90 to 61 million for the next season. “We will find financial stability, oxygen. Even if we have to continue the work.” The DNCG recently praised this economic recovery work. But there is still much to do. Inside, the owners make it clear that the corpses in the closets left by their predecessor were very numerous. This forced the LOSC to initiate several criminal and civil legal proceedings. These proceedings are now in the hands of public prosecutors.
A recruitment drive planned for this summer
Sportingly, after the title of champion of France last season, the shareholder is however disappointed and wants to do everything to regain the European cup at the end of the next season. The club will have enough to invest this summer in the transfer window but will do nothing. The aim of Merlyn Partners is to ensure that the club generates its own recruitment budget on its own. A recruitment drive will be planned for this summer although sales will remain essential to invest.
Until the accounts of the LOSC are completely cleaned, the sale of players will still be a lever for financing, but the trade will no longer be at the center of the project. Privately, Merlyn Partners affirms that “with a commercial project, all that is needed is a failed transfer window to fall into great difficulty. You cannot function well when all you think about is trading”. One of the assets of development will be training. “We believe in our training and we are working to bring it back to the heart of the strategy. It is a process that takes time, but training is fundamental. Our model is Atalanta Bergamo”, blows a source close to the “shareholder” .
The shareholder is not a seller
The Italian club relies on reasonable investments (never recruiting above 20 million euros), quality training, European performances on which it capitalizes and a trainer (Gasperini) who imposes a game identity and improves his players The choice of leaders for this strategic position will therefore be of primary importance, while Jocelyn Gourvennec could be dismissed and the profiles are being studied (Bettoni, Batlles).
As for the rumors of a takeover of the LOSC buzzing behind the scenes of French football, the position is very clear inside the shareholder: “We are clearly not sellers. We think we can still create a lot value in this club. This process can involve us at least another 3 to 5 years.” Largely enough to restore European emotions to Dogues supporters.