Sunday, June 20, 2010

World Cup 2010: Nicolas Anelka sent home by France Football Federation.

Anyone who has been watching the World Cup knows that there is unrest in the French dressing room. Much of the unrest appears to come from the fact that their manager, Raymond Domenech, is at odds with his team over the tactics he is using and the players he is choosing to field.

Until now this is something which we have only been guessing from the body language of Thierry Henri and others, but now it has exploded into the open and resulted in Nicolas Anelka being sent home after refusing to apologise for an outburst at the manager at half-time of Thursday's 2-0 defeat to Mexico.

According to French sports newspaper L'Equipe Anelka exploded in rage in the dressing room, verbally abusing the coach. He is reported to have said, "Go fuck yourself you son of a whore."
Apparently, Anelka was later given an opportunity to withdraw those comments but decided he would rather leave the World Cup than do so. He really does believe that Domenech is a "son of a whore".

This does much to explain the abysmal form which France are displaying in this tournament.

The French captain sums up the mood of the squad.

"It's a catastrophe, that's all we can say. We are not a great team," said Evra, who was part of the side which suffered an early exit at Euro 2008. "When you are knocked out of the European Championship in the first round and you are also capable of being knocked out in the first round of the World Cup, you just don't want to think about football after that.

"I honestly didn't see it coming. What hurts is that we didn't know how to react, or how to equalise, and then they killed us with that second goal. I am deeply upset, I'm disgusted. We owe it to ourselves to beat South Africa. But as for miracles, I don't believe in them too much."

Domenech leaves France at the end of this tournament. It seems that, for the players, this won't come a moment too soon.

Click here for full article.

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