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Labrune disappointed by Bielsa exit

Marcelo Bielsa’s resignation left Marseille’s president disappointed, but Vincent Labrune insists there is no animosity towards the Argentine coach.

Bielsa stunned the Ligue 1 club when he announced his decision to stand down to the media following Saturday’s 1-0 defeat to Caen in their Ligue 1 opener.

The news has put a dent in Marseille’s early-season plans, with Franck Passi to take over as caretaker.

At a lengthy news conference on Thursday, president Labrune offered his take on the situation.

“I’m absolutely not here to announce the name of our next coach,” he said.

“We’re here to give you an update on our state of mind and our ambitions.

“The first feeling was amazement as I had no idea he was planning to leave. There was also shock at the timing.

“There was real disappointment. Personally I would have preferred for him to have come and seen me.

“But I have no anger and no worries, we have a built a team to have ambition.”

There had been confusion as to when Bielsa’s contract would run to, with the 59-year-old not signing a new deal at the club despite speculation to the contrary during the close-season.

“There had been no changes to Marcelo Bielsa’s contract,” he added. 

“The shareholders have made very significant efforts financially so that the two parties would be close to the point of reaching an agreement before he left for his holiday in June.

“We had looked to sign his contract before the start of the season.”

Bielsa, who coached Argentina for six years, only took the job in May 2014.

Thu 13 Aug, 2015
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