Monday 21 June 2010

Thought Picnic: Légion d'honte to the French XI

Unacceptable conduct
The indiscipline of the French team at this World Cup is breath-taking in its depiction and despicable in all respects. Regardless of whether the manager of the French team had lost the respect of players and fans there was nothing that could warrant the insult and abuse that he suffered of the words from Nicholas Anelka.
If anything, what we must take away from this is that talent and success does not necessarily breed good character and conduct – in football, we do celebrate talent but that should not transform the talented into an automatic role model, much more should be desired and expected.
The haughtiness of success
It is unfortunate that players can become so full of themselves that their ability to submit to authority and respect leadership is lost, they thinking that by their ability they are not answerable to anyone and have by reason of prowess become indispensable and irreplaceable.
When one plays for one’s country, it is an honour, a privilege and a calling to a cause greater than oneself to participate in a team committed to bringing glory to the motherland – the case with the French-XI 2010 has done more to bring shame and derision to a country that once was the pride of world football when they lifted the World Cup in 1998.
Missing the point
The captain of the team completely missed the point when he said Anelka was not the problem but the traitor that made the abuse public. Well, there would have been no need for seeking a traitor if Anelka had been of impeccable behaviour at first and even if the case were made public and Anelka had gracefully apologised, the situation would have not have descended into a farce.
The situation was just not acceptable and it was right regardless of the opinions of other team players to send such a perpetrator of reprehensible behaviour home in disgrace and ignominy.
Treasonable is the word
The decision of the team to refuse to train plumbed the depths of juvenile obduracy bordering on treasonable by reason of the bringing the name of the fatherland into disrepute which should be punished once their tenure in this World Cup is over.
Not one of those players should ever wear the colours of France again as an example to others who might be tempted to treat the call to national duty with levity. It should be a salutary lesson to every player called to play for country anywhere else in the world – the French must lead in the instilling of proper discipline in national teams as an example and template for the future.
Bad conduct deserves no rewards
The greater providence in this matter should be that no success should emanate from this behaviour allowing for them to proceed to the next round, this kind of saga cannot dominate the headlines to the detriment of better behaved and performing teams at this World Cup.
With the already known change of coach should be the clean sweep of the stink of this delinquency and even though now they have returned to training and stated they are playing for honour, it smacks of hubris and cant to even pretend to virtue after atrocious conduct and rank immaturity presaging a pall of irresponsibility and bad example.
They can only be deserving of one honour in France and it should be the Légion d'honte. Shame, on all of them.

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