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 French Footie Hit By 'Plot To Bar Non-Whites'

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PostSubject: French Footie Hit By 'Plot To Bar Non-Whites'    Thu May 05, 2011 4:04 pm

French footie bosses have been accused of hatching a secret plan to stop non-white players representing the national team.

The French Football Federation (FFF) is launching an investigation into an alleged plan to introduce an 'ethnic quota' following the leak of a tape made by a senior official.

The whistleblowing recording was made by Mohammed Belkacemi, France's technical advisor for district football.

Investigative website Mediapart claims that the scandal implicates high-ranking French officials all the way up to and including national coach Laurent Blanc.

Its report details extracts from a transcript of an FFF meeting last November during which those present discussed setting a cap on players of certain origins.

That quota, designed to restrict the number of dual-nationality players coming through their national training programmes, would have limited 'non-whites' to 30%.

The secret plan is causing shockwaves in France and the website concludes that officials think there are "too many blacks and Arabs" in French football.

Mr Blanc, who initially denied any discussion about quotas, has now apologised for the "certain terms" he used, though his position is under threat.

National technical director Francois Blaquart, responsible for youth coaching policy, was suspended on Saturday but said that the plan had been "abandoned".

Mr Belkacemi, who taped the FFF meeting in November, insists that he was not responsible for leaking the recording to the media.

He claims that he sent the only copy of the recording to the FFF the day after it was made.

An inquiry into the allegations is now under way.

Mr Belkacemi told French news agency AFP: "I explained everything to the inquiry.

"I recorded the meeting on November 8, 2010, to testify internally about unacceptable things that I had already heard before.

"I sent the only copy of the recording to the federation on November 9, 2010, to confirm my words."

Meanwhile, the federation's president, Fernand Duchaussoy, denies he knew about a meeting between Mr Blanc and other coaches discussing quotas.



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