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Diacre insists France will not be destabilized before Women’s World Cup

France stars Wendie Renard, Kadidiatou Diani and Marie-Antoinette Katoto all put their international careers on hold last month.

(FILES) France's coach Corinne Diacre looks on during the Tournoi de France women's friendly football match between France and Uruguay, at the Raymond-Kopa Stadium in Angers, western France. (Photo by JEAN-FRANCOIS MONIER / AFP)

France coach Corinne Diacre has vowed to lead Les Bleus at this year’s Women’s World Cup, and insists that her team will not be “destabilized” after several star players decided to boycott the national team until their situation is addressed.

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France head into this summer’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand in crisis, with captain Wendie Renard and forwards Kadidiatou Diani and Marie-Antoinette Katoto putting their international careers temporarily on hold. The three players will forego the World Cup if major changes are not made by the French Football Federation (FFF), with Katoto saying she feels “no longer aligned with the management of the team”. Reports have claimed the players want the FFF to call time on Diacre’s six-year stint in charge, but the former France defender insists she is going nowhere.

Diacre defiant

“In view of the shameful media outburst of recent days, I wish to publicly reaffirm that I am fully determined to carry out my mission, and above all, to honour France at the next World Cup,” Diacre said in a widely reported statement. “My detractors have not hesitated to attack my personal and professional integrity without bothering with the truth. I will not let myself be affected by this destabilisation operation, which does not take into account my sporting record, and whose only objective is a personal settling of scores.”

United States internationals Megan Rapinoe and Alex Morgan are among those to offer public support to the striking players, along with global players’ union FIFPRO. The FFF pledged to examine the matter last month, and French media reports have suggested Diacre’s position will be discussed by the federation later this week.

France’s group stage opponents

France will begin their World Cup campaign against Jamaica on 23 July, before facing fellow Group F rivals Brazil and Panama on 29 July and 2 August respectively.


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