How a former Man Utd player made Red Star the most cultural club in France

“Our ambition is never to change. We want to be where no one expects us. For Bellion, these new developments continue to build on the club’s existing heritage and identity, which has grown through its political and community actions over its 125-year history.

“We have phenomenal supporters with a very strong spirit, they are socially engaged with a loud voice and never sing a vulgar word in their chants,” Bellion said of the Red Star community. “They strongly support refugees, feminists, anti-homophobes and are anti-fascist like the whole club.” It is this identity that made Bellion want to work with Red Star. “When I left my career and saw all this amazing and beautiful story, I immediately thought in my heart about the romantic pop football club.”

The community is also an important part of the club’s cultural activities, notably through the Red Star Lab, founded by President Haddad to educate young people through football and cultural workshops. “Our goal with the lab is to ‘work the body, feed the mind,’ Bellion continues. “We want great women and great men before great footballers. Culture can only help performance and we also want our young people to understand that there is more to life than football. We taught children how to make and play with their own football boots, learn about street art, fashion recycling, radio commentary, photography, architecture and many other projects. We will always continue to look for new talent in photography, film, art, music, cooking, fashion and anything that inspires us and gives back to our community.

About Shirley Dickson

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