Noel Le Graet takes back his comments and apologizes to Zidane

Several French football personalities criticized the FFP president

French Football Federation (FFF) president Noel Le Graet issued an official statement on Monday to apologize to Zinedine Zidane following his controversial comments about the former Real Madrid boss.

In his bid to stand by the FFF’s decision to extend Didier Deschamps’ contact with the team, Le Graet made some remarks which did not go down well with French football personalities.

“Zidane to Brazil? I don’t care, let him go wherever he wants,” he told RMC Sport.

“Did Zidane try to contact me? Of course not, I wouldn’t have even picked up the phone.

“[You can] make a special show for him to find a club or a national team.”

Kylian Mbappe, Franck Ribery, Djibril Cisse, Youri Djorkaeff, Florent Pietrus and sports minister Amelie Oudea-Castera all expressed their unease for Le Graet’s comments.

Noel Le Graet’s apology

Following the uproar, the FFF president issued an official apology through a statement sent to AFP.

“These awkward comments have created a misunderstanding,” he noted.

“I would like to personally apologize for these comments, which in no way reflect my thoughts, nor my consideration for the player he was and the coach he has become,” he stated.

Real Madrid defend their legend

Earlier on Monday, Real Madrid had released an official statement on their website to show their support towards Zidane after the news about Le Graet’s remarks broke.

“Real Madrid laments the unfortunate comments made by the president of the French Football Federation, Noel Le Graet, regarding Zinedine Zidane, one of the world’s biggest sporting legends,” the statement started.

“These remarks show a lack of respect for one of the most admired figures by football fans around the world and our club is awaiting an immediate correction.

“Zinedine Zidane, world and European champion representing his country, amongst many other honours, he embodies the values of the sport and has proven this throughout his professional career as a player and as a coach.

“The statements by the president of the French Football Federation are inappropriate for someone holding such representation and are in themselves unsuitable, like those he also made about our captain Karim Benzema, current Ballon d’Or, Nations League champion with France in 2021 and winner of five Champions Leagues, amongst many other honours.”



Arab Observer

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