After Noel Le Grat, the president of the French Football Federation, made disparaging remarks about Zinedine Zidane on Sunday, Kylian Mbappe stepped up to defend the France legend. “Zidane is France, you don’t disrespect a legend like that”, the World Cup star Mbappe wrote late Sunday on his Twitter account.
Zidane, a former playmaker, is regarded as one of the greatest players in soccer history. In 1998, he helped Les Bleus win their first World Cup title. In 2000, they won the European Championship. Like Mbappé, he scored twice in the World Cup finals and once on the losing team. Le Grat recently extended Didier Deschamps’ contract with France to July 2026 and was a guest on the talk show on RMC radio on Sunday. He was questioned regarding speculation that Zidane would succeed Tite as coach of Brazil. Read More: Didier Deschamps will be France’s coach until the 2026 World Cup
What did Le Graët say about Zinedine Zidane which made Kylian Mbappe defend him?
“I’d be surprised if he went there. But he can do what he likes, it doesn’t concern me. I’ve never met with him (Zinedine Zidane), and we (the French Football Federation) never considered parting ways with Didier,” Le Graët told RMC. “Would it upset me that (Zidane) went there? I couldn’t care less. He can go where he likes, to a big team, a national team … Did Zidane try to contact me? Certainly not, I wouldn’t even have picked up the phone.”
Amélie Oudéa-Castéra, France’s minister of sport, went further than Mbappé, whose tweet did not specifically mention Le Grat and is said to have tense relations with him. She requested that Le Grat apologise to Zidane. She even referred to him as president using inverted commas. Read More: Owners of Paris Saint-Germain are interested in investing in a Premier League team
She said on Twitter: “A shameful lack of respect, which hurts us all, toward a legend of our sport,”. “A ‘president’ of the top sporting federation in France should not say that. Apologies, please, for going too far on Zidane.”
Meanwhile, Le Grat has been accused of sexual harassment, and Oudéa-Castéra has requested an investigation into the FFF.
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