Marseille agree deal to stay at iconic stadium
31 July 2014, 20:54
Marseille - Marseille have agreed a deal with local authorities to continue playing at their famous Stade Velodrome home, ending weeks of disagreement that saw them threaten to play their matches elsewhere.
Marseille's mayor Jean-Claude Gaudin, of the right-wing UMP party, explained that OM had accepted a deal with the city council that will see them pay around 7.4 million euros (5.9m, $9.9m) per year to rent the stadium.
The club's owner Margarita Louis-Dreyfus, said: "It is a powerful gesture for the supporters and all the people of Marseille.
"We are all agreed that OM belong at the Velodrome, which is why I am so happy that we have come to an acceptable agreement."
Marseille were so unhappy with the initial cost quoted to continue renting the Velodrome - up to 10 million euros per year - that they had threatened to play their first 'home' game of the new Ligue 1 season, against Montpellier on August 17, at their opponents' Stade de la Mosson.
But the striking of a deal means French football's best supported club can continue playing at a stadium they have called home since 1937.
The Stade Velodrome has been completely refurbished ahead of Euro 2016, which France will host, with the capacity increased to around 67,000.