Olympique de Marseille is a French football club based in the city of Marseille currently featuring in the French Ligue 1. It is one of the biggest clubs of France and is the only French team so far to have won the UEFA Champions League.
Olympique de Marseille were founded in 1899 and won their first French first division title in 1937 and their first French Cup in 1924. Marseille had to wait until the 1970s to dominate French football completely but they did do exactly that when they were in control.
But the best spell of the French club was from the late 1980s to the mid 1990s. Bernard Tapie became the club president of the club and constructed the greatest club team ever witnessed in France. He signed Alain Giresse, Jean-Pierre Papin, Chris Waddle, Klaus Allofs, Enzo Francescoli, Abedi Pelé, Didier Deschamps, Basile Boli, Marcel Desailly, Rudi Völler and Eric Cantona as well as appointing high-profile coaches like Franz Beckenbauer, Gérard Gili and Raymond Goethals.
Between 1989 and 1992 Marseille won four consecutive French league titles and also won the UEFA Champions League in its new format in 1993.
But in 1994, due to financial irregularities and a match fixing scandal involving the then president Bernard Tapie, they suffered forced relegation to the second division and returned to the first division only after two seasons. They also lost their 1992-1993 first division title.
This bribery scandal was dubbed the l’affaire VA-OM and it was said that Valenciennes players Jacques Glassmann, Jorge Burruchaga and Christophe Robert were contacted by OM player Jean-Jacques Eydelie, in order to let OM win and, more importantly, not to injure any OM player ahead of the UEFA Champions League final in 1993.
Since their return to the first divsionm Marseille have been gradually trying to revive their glory days. In the 2007-2008 season they finished third to Lyon in the French Ligue 1.
Olympique de Marseille play their home matches at Stade Velodrme in Marseille which can hold 60,031 people. The club bears the nicknames l’OM, l’Ohème, Marseillais.
- 8 French Championships (last one in 1992)
- 10 French Cups
- 1 Champions League trophy
- 2 UEFA Cup finals