The Sauvigny-les-Bois football club, founded in 1978, had to wait six years to play in a real stadium

Playing football is fine. In Sauvigny-les-Bois, in 1974, some schoolmates got the idea to meet for a few wild games. Problem, where to practice? Gilbert Martinet, a farmer at Les Avenières in Forges, offers the small group … one of his fields. “We put in two wooden goals, and that was it,” explains André Martinet, son of Gilbert.

The initiative is imitated. Four years later, the Union Sportive de Sauvigny-les-Bois was born, under the leadership of Jacques Baillard. Two teams of young people, minimal and cadets, are formed.

“It’s good to play on a field, but after a while …”

But still no stadium project. “For four years, the young people played in the meadow at Avenières close to the farm,” notes André Martinet. “It was good to play in a field, but after a while … And then there was still cow dung. »

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Especially since the field in question, rolled by the crampons of the minis and cadets, gave great signs of fatigue. Although he no longer played, taken (already) by his activities as a farmer, André Martinet followed the case closely. “Another piece of land has become available seven hundred meters from the Avenières in the Vertes Vallées. It was a little better than on our meadow.”

Moves in 1980

In 1980, the club therefore moved and created, in addition to the minimal and cadets, a senior team. “At Vertes Vallées the terrain was a little better than at Avenières. Still with bumps, slightly sloping, ”continues André Martinet. “It was also a bit DIY. For fights, people parked along the road. And we got access to the country in a fun way, stepping over a hedge using a kind of wooden staircase made for the apartment. Here, too, the adventure lasted only a while. Thereafter, the USSB lay dormant for three years due to labor shortages.

Until the project of creating a stadium arose. Special thanks to the then mayor, Jean Dieu, now deceased. At that time, in 1983, Bernard Gaget, the future mayor (from 1989 to 2008), was a simple municipal councilor. “This stadium was necessary. It was actually what motivated a group of people to reunite the sleeping club. There were lots of kids who wanted to play, but also seniors. You still had to have something good.”

A whole new area, towards Imphy

The brand new area emerged from the ground in the spring of 1984. It was built on the outskirts of the city, towards the Imphy. Happiness never comes alone, in September of the same year the club was reborn from its ashes and hired a senior team in the division championship in the fourth division.

“This stadium, it was a new life, which was announced for the club, which started again more beautiful,” explains Guy Lavalette, elected president. “I remember the kids on Wednesday were happy to go to training”. In November 1984, the stadium was officially inaugurated by Pierre Bérégovoy, Deputy Mayor of Nevers and Minister of Finance.

“The club deserved a real stadium”

Who says stadium, obviously says locker room. The club leaders then chose the option … prefabricated class, which they went to dismantle at the Donzy school. And that they went up behind the railing, along the creek. In the 2000s, hard locker rooms emerged from the ground.

Henri Vergnaud knew it all. From Pré des Avenières to the municipal stadium via Vertes Vallées. “I trained young people at Les Avenières. It was truly a meadow we had to deal with. But it passed, we got used to it, ”he explains. “Like the green valleys. I remember I had arranged it all with Avelino de Sousa. We had big goals for the seniors and less for the kids. It’s true that the club still deserved a real stadium. We have it, it is well. “

Cost. The new stadium project cost 520,000… francs at the time (79,268 euros). It was financed by grants from Youth and Sport, the Municipalities’ Fund and own funds from the municipality of Sauvigny-les-Bois. The balance was covered by a loan from the Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations.

Pierre Brerard

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