Sunday, June 20, 2010

The circus is in town for a few more days!

One thing the French National team does well, like all my compatriots is strike! So why not protest the on goings with Anelka with a nice little strike! Love it! The players decided to take a practice session off in protest of the manner in which the Anelka affair was handled. Domenech had to read a statement as to why the players were absent from the practice field as well as intervene in a heated confrontation between Evra and a member of the French staff.

After the altercation the entire team sequestered themselves in the team bus for half an hour. Domenech then read a prepared statement by the team about no practicing to protest the situation, but did emphasis the gratitude the team had towards their fans and would ensure they did something to make up for the missed practice. The drama continued when the bus returned to the hotel...without Domenech. The players refused to give their manager a lift back home!

Clearly the coaching staff and the federation have lost complete control of the situation. You could argue that a team needs to be quiet and listen to their manager, unfortunately when a team or an organization continual feels continually frustrated and poorly led, if at all, it comes to a breaking point. Which is what we are witnessing today. We all know that Domenech's last game will be on Tuesday, but based on what has happened the past 48 hours I think it is crystal clear that the entire Federation needs to rethink its leadership structure - starting with Escalettes. There are capable options that could run the Federation - Guy Roux, Aime Jacquet, Gerard Houllier, or Arsene Wenger (long shot but he would bring instant stability and credibility) to name a few. Knowing that Laurent Blanc will be the next man in charge is reassuring from a team management stand point, but the federation has demonstrated a poor ability to manage the situation and must also change and earn back the trust of fans and players.

We have reached a point of no return...mutiny on the bounty cannot hold a candle to this drama! Who knows what will transpire on Tuesday. Will the players decide who they want on the pitch? Will they even listen to what Domenech has to say? Might they also use their own substitution rotation? All joking aside, the only real solution would be to have Domenech sit in the stands, allow Boghossian to run the team for the one match. This will at least allow the team to stand a chance and have some semblance of normalcy. What will be interesting to see is whether or not this situation has actually united the team - give them a focus to show Domenech and the Federation and the critics that they are better than what they have shown.  We will see in 48 hours!

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