Five Les Bleus bust-ups following Payet’s Deschamps diatribe
Having been pivotal to West Ham United’s early Premier League season success, Dimitri Payet has claimed he is being treated extremely unfairly by France national boss Didier Deschamps, after being excluded from the last squad selection.
The enraged Frenchman has been a star in the top-flight since arriving on east London this summer from Marseille for £10.7m, but his dazzling displays haven’t been enough to warrant a place in his national side.
Payet recently laid into Deschamps and claimed he definitely deserves a call-up based on his current form, having struck four times in eight league outings for Slaven Bilic’s Hammers so far this term, and his side are 12/1 with Coral for a top six finish.
“I feel as if it is an injustice,” said Payet. “It is more than a year now that I am in the best form of my career, even if I can still get better. So, for me, it is unjust not to be in the France squad.
“Whose fault is it? A bit of mine because I am not doing what they want of me but there is maybe something else. What? I don’t know. I hear rumours that I am frowned upon. You have to take me as I am.
“Perhaps it is my fault because I have not done what is expected of me, but maybe there is more to it. He [Deschamps] has the choice to make, he thinks about the group as a whole.
“That is what perhaps I reproach myself with today. I hear the sounds that say I wouldn’t look good in the team. Good. You have to take me as I am.
“If you ask all my coaches, I don’t think they will tell you: ‘Dimitri, he is an idiot.’ The thing that I haven’t yet come to terms with is the injustice.”
The 28-year-old former Ligue 1 playmaker believes he has shown a lot of strength this season within a competitive West Ham squad that he feels is thriving with talent.
“If you are not good, they can quickly put someone in your place and forget about you. The rhythm, it is much more intense. In training, I was shattered at the beginning. In the match, that is multiplied by ten,” he continued.
“You cannot afford to be soft. You need to win the duels, to be ready to multiply your efforts. And that means going full blast. You take hits. As long as they are not full-blown attacks, they have their charm.”
After his recent criticism of Deschamps, here are five other France national team altercations.
Payet isn’t the only player to have fallen out with Deschamps this year, with Manchester City’s Nasri having called the France boss a “hypocrite” and also suggested Les Bleus number one goalkeeper Hugo Lloris contributed to him missing out on the 2014 World Cup.
Deschamps claimed Nasri lacked the attitude for last summer’s tournament, with the Sky Blues midfielder eventually retiring from international football and angrily stating the coach “should have acted like a man” when dealing with selections.
After his infamous mistake during the 1994 World Cup, which contributed to France exiting the competition, then-boss Gerard Houllier blamed the former Premier league icon for tournament failure, calling him “the assassin of the team”.
Having accused Ginola of “sending an Exocet missile through the heart of French football”, the former Liverpool boss was sued by his previous player, but the courts dismissed any lawsuit.
Known as ‘Le Sulk’ by the tabloids, Anelka was constantly in the headlines for his reactionary behaviour, and he caused no bigger drama than during the 2010 World Cup, when he was sent home for verbally abusing coach Raymond Domenech.
After reaching the finals through Thierry Henry’s blatant hand-ball against the Republic of Ireland, the French eventually set-up let its fans down by boycotting training after Anelka’s exclusion, during a truly disgraceful campaign.
One of the leading characters in that World Cup disaster was former Manchester United defender Evra, who had an altercation with fitness coach Robert Duverne, with Domenech having to separate the pair during a public training day.
“I am disgusted, I am quitting my post,” French Football Federations’ managing director Jean-Louis Valentin said immediately after the incident between Evra and Duverne, before driving off in his car. “It’s a scandal for the French, for the federation and the French team.
In a less dramatic bust-up, Old Trafford hero Cantona reacted angrily towards his 1988 dropping from the France set-up by simply referring to then-coach Henri Michel as a “bag of s***” during a live media broadcast.
The Frenchman was banned indefinitely from international action, though Michel was sacked shortly after the 1990 World Cup, leaving the door open for Cantona to eventually return. France will need plenty of fiery characters like this to win Euro 2016, and they are 7/2 to do so next summer.