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Tuesday, 9 November 2010

France's World Cup footballers want their bonus...for a good cause

If you thought you had heard the last of the debacle that accompanied France's participation at the last World Cup in South Africa, take a deep breath and prepare yourself for the latest twist.

The players who took part in the shambles now appear to want the bonuses they had previously said they would waive.

Or more accurately, they're refusing to put pen to paper and sign the document giving up their claim to a share of sponsorship money to which they're entitled.

On Tuesday the sports daily L'Equipe revealed that the players seemed to be going back on a promise made by the former captain Patrice Evra just after the team ignominiously crashed out of the competition that, "They would be waiving all bonuses" and "wouldn't accept a centime of sponsorship money."

But that was four months ago, as the paper pointed out.

And although the Fédération Française de Football (French Football Federation, FFF) wouldn't be offering compensation, to which the players were ineligible after their first-round exit, there was still the matter of €2 million linked to sponsorship deals.

That's a figure, says the national daily Le Parisien, based on the number of international matches played in one season, and has nothing to do with the World Cup per se.

Just about now you might be thinking that those hard done by millionaires imagine they have a right to the dosh no matter how disgraceful their behaviour was on an off the pitch in South Africa.

Or perhaps you're wondering whether last week's decision by their coach during the fiasco, Raymond Domenech, to claim €2.9 million in compensation from the FFF played a part in appearing to renege on their earlier promise.

Alou Diarra, speaking during a press conference at the 2010 World Cup (snaphot from YouTube video)

But wait. There's apparently another perspective on the news, if the current captain Alou Diarra is to be believed.

He admitted later in the day during an interview with RMC radio that the players wanted to get their mitts on the dosh, in a manner of speaking because, "Contractually the FFF was obliged to hand it over. and we want to know what's going to happen to it."

But it's not for the indecent or insolent reasons implied in L'Equipe's report.

"It's a time of year when a lot of people find it hard to make ends meet," he said.

"We would like to see the money go to good causes, charities that really need it," he continued.

"It's not an action by the FFF or anyone else, but a decision taken at the initiative of the players."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

They have no shame!

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