Less than two years from the Paris Olympics, the authorities of French sport are taking on water


To analyse. French sport is rocking dangerously on its way to the Olympic Games (OG) in Paris in 2024. At the French Football Federation (FFF), the president, Noël Le Graët, does not reassure anyone. The sailors of the rugby ship (the president of the Federation Bernard Laporte in the lead) have barely left the court. At the French National Olympic and Sports Committee (CNOSF), the president, Brigitte Henriques, passed her secretary general, Didier Séminet, overboard in mid-September. The National Sports Agency (ANS) is busy plugging the waterways highlighted by the Court of Auditors during the summer. As for the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games Organizing Committee (Cojop), it has been facing headwinds for several months, aggravated by the inflationary context.

Let’s go back one by one to the inventory of these different captaincies of French sport. Apex institution of the sports movement, the CNOSF is crossed at its summit by a crisis that it had never known in more than fifty years of existence and which divides the various federations that it represents. FFF defector, Brigitte Henriques, the first woman in history at the helm of the CNOSF, is accused of having imported the authoritarian management methods applied within the “3F”.

Read also: Olympic Committee: a worrying divorce at the top, two years from Paris 2024

In addition to an internal crisis, the CNOSF is experiencing an existential crisis. Who knows what the institution on Avenue Pierre-de-Coubertin in Paris is used for – apart from composing the Olympic delegations? Responsible both for bringing the interests of the sports movement to the public authorities and for representing the International Olympic Committee (IOC) on French soil, the CNOSF is struggling to assert itself, less than two years from the Olympics, in the face of the ANS, the Cojop and the Ministry of Sports.

Cropping

The course is not clearer on the side of the ANS. After a chaotic start, the “Agency”, which has been responsible for the practice of sport and high-level sport for all since 2019, has gradually established itself in the French ecosystem. Even if it means shaking up old habits thanks to its high performance manager, Claude Onesta, the former successful coach of French handball. The report of the Court of Auditors, delivered on September 21 to the deputies, sounds like a call to order.

The magistrates of the rue Cambon invite the ANS in particular to ” clarify “ his missions, and the Ministry of Sports, which provides it with its entire budget (i.e. 431 million euros in 2023), to reaffirm its supervision. A reframing which does not say its name of an operator of the ministry who took himself, sometimes, for the ministry.

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