Touched by the mobilization of Nantes supporters who wanted to allow him to keep the medal of the title of champion of France 2001 which he put up for auction to help the fight against the Covid-19, Raynald Denoueix informs on RMC that he has decided to keep the precious object after having hesitated for a long time on its final decision.
“It was a little bit over my head.” Raynald Denoueix, a rare media spokesperson, accepted RMC’s invitation on Wednesday to discuss this tremendous surge of solidarity from supporters of FC Nantes. Hundreds of them mobilized and paid more than 12,000 euros for him to recover his 2001 French champion medal which he had put up for auction for the care staff who are fighting against the Covid-19 pandemic.
In RMC General Mobilization, the 71-year-old tactician explained how he had been put in contact with Cyril Dumoulin, Nantes goalkeeper for the French handball team and organizer of this initiative: “It was he who had the idea of launching an auction with sports objects. (…) I don’t have 500,000 things, I looked, so I told myself that the title of 2001 is still quite striking, that it is an object that can interest people , athletes from the Nantes region. That’s how it started. “
First embarrassed by the generosity of the supporters
This is where the supporters came in. A solidarity that somewhat embarrassed the interested party. “I did not expect that, he admits. I cannot accept to have given something and that it is given back to me. It seems too easy to me. There is almost a side deception. I myself says that people were going to say: “Denoueix is easy, he gives something and after we give him back, it’s easy under these conditions to give!”
But when he learned of “all the messages” sent by the supporters, Raynald Denoueix let himself be convinced. All in modesty: “They say that I must recover it because it represents a title and that I deserve it. In reality, I was not alone to be champion of France. There was a team and, above all, it there was a club before us. “
“It is a pleasure”
But what about the medal, which has not left its home despite the auction, given the confinement rules in force. At first, he had the idea of making it a public memory: “I wanted it to be in a place so that it would be a landmark for people in the weeks, months and even years to come. To say that there was a coronavirus at one time and that it was bad for living, bad for football and that it was quite a test. Let it be a reminder. “
This project was finally quickly abandoned: “Very quickly, I saw in the end that people might be disappointed. Because they did this to make me happy. (…) And that makes me pleasure, of course, because it’s something I care about. It seemed so logical to do that. ” After reflection, he finally decided on Wednesday morning to give “reason” to those who “made that extra effort” to give him the medal. “I agree to keep it”.
Raynald Denoueix nevertheless wished to highlight the initial objective of these auctions, considering that the “merit” belongs above all to Cyril Dumoulin and “all those who participated”. And to conclude: “Small streams make big rivers. It will help to help those who are in contact with the sick and who care”.