French World Cup squad suspended

France have sensationally suspended all 23 members of their World Cup squad for their next game.

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New Les Bleus coach Laurent Blanc has requested that none of the 23-man squad that represented France in South Africa be called up for the friendly against Norway next month. New Les Bleus coach Laurent Blanc has requested that none of the 23-man squad that represented France in South Africa be called up for the friendly against Norway next month. France endured a disastrous World Cup failing to win any of their three games and crashing out at the first hurdle. The squad also staged a strike by walking out on training in protest to the treatment of team-mate Nicolas Anelka who was sent home after a bust-up with former coach Raymond Domenech during the second group match against Mexico. There were also reports of infighting in the squad between players and management. The actions of the players came in for heavy criticism from the French Football Federation and former players, including Lillian Thuram.

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Blanc, who will take charge for the first time against Norway in Oslo on 11th August, has asked the French Football Federation to suspend the players and the FFF have accepted the proposal. The development is the latest in a long line of incidents to rock the 1998 World Cup winners as they look to bounce back from the disappointments of South Africa. A statement on www.fff.fr read: “Laurent Blanc met this Friday, July 23, with the federal council, to whom he presented his staff and his sporting project. “He also proposed to the federal council, who accepted, not to retain for the friendly against Norway, on Wednesday August 11 in Oslo, any of the 23 players officially selected by the French Football Federation for the World Cup in South Africa. “Laurent Blanc will release the list of players retained for this match against Norway on Thursday August 5 at 11.30.”


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