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Blanc recalls rebel leaders Evra and Ribery

  • Reuters, Thursday, March 17, 2011 2:50 PM

Despite the opposition of Sports Minister Chantal Jouanno, France coach Laurent Blanc recalled Patrice Evra and Franck Ribery for the Euro 2012 qualifier in Luxembourg.

Evra captained France at the 2010 World Cup but was banned for five games after leading the rebellion that resulted in a boycott of training camp. Ribery received a three-game suspension for his role in the affair after striker Nicolas Anelka was sent home for insulting then-Coach Raymond Domenech. This is the first time Evra and Ribery have been recalled since their suspensions expired.

“I make choices based on sporting criteria. I am only accountable to the president of the French Football Federation,” Blanc said. “They had a certain status in the France team because of their experience. They need humility to return to the group with the same status as everyone else. [If not], I will be uncompromising and will not hesitate to take radical action.”

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