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Latest update : 2009-06-22

Jean-Claude Dassier has been officially named as the new president of Marseille's French-league football club. The 57-year-old Dassier replaces Pape Diouf, who left after a meeting with the club's majority shareholder, Robert Louis-Dreyfus.

AFP - French league giants Marseille officially named Jean-Claude Dassier as their new president on Monday following the departure of Pape Diouf.

The 57-year-old Dassier, until recently the head of information at France's biggest television station TF1, signed a three-year contract with the club.

Diouf's departure, following a meeting with the club's majority shareholder Robert Louis-Dreyfus last week, caused waves at Marseille, where the former journalist and players' agent had a lot of support among coaches and fans.

Dassier announced at the weekend his intention to have another former players' agent, Jean-Pierre Bernes - a former top official with Marseille from 1989 to 1993 - appointed as his advisor.

However that news evoked more grumbling in the southern port city, with sporting director Jose Anigo threatening to leave the club if Bernes was appointed. Dassier has since dropped his plan to bring Bernes on board.

Marseille finished second in the French league last month, their best finish in years, missing out on the chance to claim a first league trophy since 1992.

The recent appointment of former France international Didier Deschamps as coach has given the club's die-hard but long-suffering fans hope that a new era can begin.

But uncertainty remains following Dassier's appointment.

Deschamps said Thursday: "I am not about to embark blindly on what will certainly be an extremely difficult mission.

"I am waiting to see the future management structure at the club which will require a great deal of loyalty, responsibility and above all, competence," added the 40-year-old who was only hired by Diouf at the end of last season following the departure of Belgian manager Eric Gerets.

Date created : 2009-06-22