Nimes Face Relegation After LFP Decision on Match-Fixing
On 17th March, the LFP Disciplinary Commission gave its decision after the investigation of several matches played by Nimes Olympique last season. They found that the club tried to arrange four matches, by the actions of two of their officers, majority shareholder Serge Kasparian and former president Jean-Marc Conrad, both of whom have been banned from football for considerable periods. As a result, Nimes will be administratively relegated one division at the end of this season – meaning that unless they can get up to the top three from their current eighth position, they will be playing in the third tier in 2015/16.
Seven matches were considered in the investigation, interestingly excluding the game away at Angers which was included in the original press coverage (rounded up here). The four determined to have been subject to attempted arrangement were all away matches, at CA Bastia (0-0), Dijon (5-1), SM Caen (1-1) and US Créteil-Lusitanos (1-1).
Given that the finding was of attempting to arrange results, rather than actually fixing, and that there is no finding that then-manager René Marsiglia knew anything about this, there is some sympathy with the views expressed by Toifilou Maoulida :
I can understand that individuals are punished because they have done wrong, but that we players, the club, the staff, the supporters, those who love Nimes Olympique, must suffer the consequences [of that], that, I cannot understand.
Nimes have the right to appeal against the sanction, so this affair is not yet finished.