x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Managers urged to help France

Didier Deschamps, the Marseille coach, has urged his fellow Ligue 1 managers to unite to help the France team overcome their "disastrous" image.

France's Nicolas Anelka exchanges words with coach Raymond Domenech during the World Cup.
France's Nicolas Anelka exchanges words with coach Raymond Domenech during the World Cup.

Didier Deschamps, the Marseille coach, has urged his fellow Ligue 1 managers to unite to help the France team overcome their "disastrous" image. Deschamps won 103 caps for Les Bleus and, along with Laurent Blanc, the new France manager, was an integral part of the side which lifted the World Cup in 1998 and the European Championships two years later.

The former France captain is expecting a different regime under Blanc following the difficult Raymond Domenech era which culminated in Les Bleus' dismal World Cup campaign. "I didn't have any relationship at all [with Domenech], like the majority of my colleagues," Deschamps told L'Equipe. "Above the fact that we know each other, that we call each other, Laurent has a different approach. We will adapt, we will give him information. This relationship between club and country is fundamental, it goes even further than the physical and medical domain.

"There are important information, this has to happen in the best way possible in a common interest, even if sometimes the interest of Les Bleus is the opposite of that of the clubs." France crashed out of the World Cup amid controversy as they managed only one point and one goal from three games in Group A and were left in disarray when the squad refused to train two days before their final game against hosts South Africa in protest at the decision to send Nicolas Anelka home.

The fallout from the fiasco rumbles on as, on Friday, Blanc banned all 23 members of the World Cup squad for next month's friendly against Norway. Deschamps has slammed the current mentality among the players. "The image of Les Bleus is disastrous," he added. "What I saw there is insupportable to me. "Certain values have the tendency to disappear. In my career, Les Bleus, well it was sacred. From the first to the 103rd selection, captain or not, I knew that I was privileged."

Elsewhere on the international scene, Mano Menezes, the coach of Corinthians, has accepted an offer to take over as coach of Brazil. "For the whole of Brazil, I say that I officially accept the invitation," he told a news conference. The Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) said on Friday night that they had offered Menezes the job after Fluminese refused to release Muricy Ramalho, their original choice.

Menezes will have the huge task of trying to rebuild Brazil's national team when they host the 2014 World Cup. * PA