Supporter of AC Ajaccio: instructions for use

Pierre-Nicolas Beretti

29 years old, supporter since 1998, member of Orsi Ribelli

“My first time at Timizzolu dates back to 1998, when I was seven years old. It was the National title match, and the ACA regained professionalism at the end of this meeting. My grandfather and my uncle brought me to the stadium and I can’t thank them enough because it was love at first sight for me. The smell of smoke bombs, the songs of the public and the sound of fireworks made me fall into the pot forever… I was very young, but I already knew that I would be addicted to François- Coty when I’m older. From the age of thirteen, I asked to travel. I attacked slowly in terms of distance, since my first trip was to Furiani for the derby in 2003. On that day, my grandmother had volunteered to take me by car in catastrophic weather conditions. I’ll never forget ! Then I went to the Stade Vélodrome with Orsi Ribelli during the 2004-2005 season. It was my first “real” trip, on the continent and with the group. In fact, when you taste the world of the stands, you don’t want to leave it anymore… Since that match in Marseille, I’ve made almost 70 trips throughout France. However, it is never easy to move from Ajaccio. When you know the constraints and the prices of transport, plane or boat, when you live on an island… I was therefore in a hurry: to celebrate my eighteenth birthday to be able to move around freely, without having to ask parental permission.

“At the time of Ligue 1, we were tapped. Completely crazy for football…” Pierre-Nicolas

My passion for the ACA really knows no bounds. I spent days and nights at the stadium, preparing tifos and banners. Days and nights in planes, in boats and on the roads of the four corners of France to follow the ACA. Which also earned me a few police custody and two stadium bans where I “pointed” anyway, by going to watch the matches on the cliff behind the stadium from where you can see a good part of the field and the stands. . We’ll call it excess passion because we’re not bad boys, quite the contrary. But when you set foot in a stadium, you are transformed. Unfortunately, the strong repression in the stadiums has somewhat killed the atmosphere and demotivated some people. At the time of Ligue 1, we were also tapped. Completely crazy for football, and far from deserved! This is part of our pain, and there have been plenty of them. Sportingly speaking, but not only. Through my group of supporters, we had a lot of lows… Fortunately, the ACA gave us more joy than disappointment. By chaining more than 23 consecutive seasons in professional, for example. When you see our limited financial means, it’s simply exceptional. The (re) rise in L1 in 2011 in Nîmes in a boiling hot parking lot, the maintenance the following year in Toulouse or the accession to the first division in 2002 are some of my most memorable memories. But the best remains the play-off match in May 2018 against HAC, where it was a bit like Corsica against France. The match postponed two days before, the anti-Corsican insults on the networks and the media, the scandalous penalty awarded to Le Havre during extra time, the equalization of Mohamed Mady Camara in the 125thand… It was fun! I saw people “in high places” crying with joy, in a state such as one could never see them in everyday life. Only football and the ACA can provide us with this!

My biggest pain was undoubtedly the Ajaccio derby in 2016. 4-1 defeat, big incident in the stands and outside the stadium, then exclusion of Orsi Ribelli by the club… We felt betrayed. But today, all of that is behind us. We did the dirty laundry as a family and now we are more united than ever. This is what constitutes the main strength of the ACA, a family and healthy club par excellence: we can sometimes argue, as in all families, but that ultimately makes us stronger. It is also for this reason, among many others, that we fall in love with the ACA. Here, we tell each other everything and we don’t hide anything. There is not a lot of economic space, but a lot of passion. The course of the club is remarkable, it does a lot with little. It must still be remembered that in just ten years, the ACA has gone from the Promotion of Honor to the D1. 1992 = takeover of the club, 2002 = Division 1… How not to fall in love?! The ACA fan is proud of his city, his history and his club. He also remains humble, in all circumstances. The ACA owes a lot to its supporters, but we also owe them a lot. It is indeed thanks to the ACA that I have created bonds of friendship and magnificent family memories, all crowned by incredible sporting achievements. The next will be to sign our return to Ligue 1! »

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