French football chiefs back Blanc in race row

Updated: 13 May 2011 09:32 IST

France coach Laurent Blanc on Thursday received the backing of the French Football Federation's (FFF) Federal Council following their probe into his role in alleged plans to introduce quotas for dual nationality players.

French football chiefs back Blanc in race row

Paris:

France coach Laurent Blanc on Thursday received the backing of the French Football Federation's (FFF) Federal Council following their probe into his role in alleged plans to introduce quotas for dual nationality players.

The decision comes two days after Blanc was also cleared of any wrongdoing by French Sports Minister Chantal Jouanno.

The two-pronged FFF and Sports Ministry inquiry was launched after the Mediapart website released a transcript of a meeting last November in which Blanc and French officials discussed introducing quotas on dual nationality players at youth training centres.

While backing Blanc, the Federal Council opened "disciplinary proceedings" in the case but without naming names in order to respect the rights of their employees.

However sources revealed that the disciplinary proceedings concerned suspended National Technical Director (DNT) Francois Blaquart and the FFF's deputy director general Andre Prevosto.

Blaquart's comment "we can think about a kind of quota without saying it" during the November meeting was described as "regrettable" by Jouanno.

Prevosto, meanwhile, was handed the secret recording of the meeting made by Mohammed Belkacemi, national technical advisor for neighbourhood football, without doing anything.

Quotas were being discussed as a result of concerns over the number of players coming through French academies in recent years, who have represented France at youth level, only to switch allegiances to the senior sides of different countries.

Meanwhile, a French anti-discrimination organisation on Thursday launched a complaint over the handling of the quota row by the FFF and the French sports ministry.

The Representative Council of Black Associations (CRAN) claimed that the clearing of Blanc demonstrated that the two bodies wanted "to bury the case".

"Today we are taking a serious decision: in the case of the French Football Federation, we are making a complaint," wrote CRAN spokesperson Louis-Georges Tin in Thursday's edition of Le Monde.

Topics : Football France Franck Ribery Patrice Evra
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