OM (1984-1986 then 1988-1994), Nancy (1986-1987), Monaco (1994-1998)
Originally from Avignon and a lover of Olympique de Marseille, Éric Di Meco had the chance to wear the colors of his favorite club for a bunch of years, having been trained in the Marseille city, launched after the judicial liquidation of the club (1981), architect of the reconstruction of OM, before spending most of his career there and winning all the Olympian titles of the Bernard Tapie era. “I had some big strokes of luck. If OM had evolved normally, I might never have playedhe estimated in the columns of Provence. This mess was a stroke of luck. Over the course of the purge which caused the Minots to leave one after the other, I went through the drops of the great clearance because I was loaned out and when I came back, Gérard Banide wanted to try me back left. At the time of the double, in 1989, I was the last of the Mohicans. Whereas, when I arrived at the training center, I was amazed by seeing the competition. […] The club lost its values after its recovery in 1984. My friends who were eliminated and I, who must have had the same destiny, were not recognized, I am almost a usurper in this story. […] This is why, on the evening of the title in 1989, then in 1993, in Munich, I paid homage to them. I always have this feeling of being there by breaking in, in the place of others who deserved more than me. They never asked me for anything, but I had in mind that I was their flag bearer. » Nicknamed “little Cruyff” during his youth in midfield, he quickly became “the mower” after his repositioning in defense, his tackles, his aggressiveness and his more than rough game having caused many victims.
He had also been one of the actors in the butchery of December 18, 1992, at the Parc des Princes, an iconic – and bloody – match that the defender told us about in his own words, a year ago. Selected pieces : “I was living in Marseille and already 15 days before the match, when I went to get bread or my kid from school, the guys gave me the slack. Besides, the first one who freaks out in the field is me. […] I was very good friends with Alain Roche, at OM we played boules together, but from the tunnel, we looked at each other, we didn’t shake hands. We forbade ourselves to fraternize. It was the start of the boxing match, the problem is that that day, it continued on the ground. […] As soon as the ball touches the ground, there is an attack on each side. […] I have a first ball which falls in my feet, and there, Fournier comes to put my foot on the knee or not far. As I’ve always preferred to be the butcher rather than the lamb, I have to show Lolo that the butcher is really me, and that I won’t be his lamb. I cash the first shot and then I outbid with this famous tackle where I start from 20 meters, both feet forward. For a long time, I was upset by this tackle. Today, he makes me laugh because he gives me a special place in the hearts of young people from Marseille who have never seen me play. […] My designated opponent was David Ginola. Tapie gave me the slack on him, when we were very good friends in the France team, and we still are today. He was the star, the one who best represented PSG with his flamboyant side. Me, I was the nasty brat who bit his calves and wanted to step on him. Our duel is almost a summary of PSG-OM, the beautiful Paris and its monuments, and Marseille the rebel, mocked, underestimated. […] I still said that I will not show this match to my son because if you want to give him the love of football, of the game, you do not show him that. »
#171: Hector De Bourgoing