Who would have thought that after the epic and miraculous course of the Blues at the World Cup in Qatar, French football would find itself on the edge of the precipice, so quickly and so violently? Catastrophic scenario. An all-powerful president thrown into oblivion in two shots by his peers due to multiple and varied slippages, until the opening of an investigation by the courts following a description for “sexist outrage “. A Federation, apparently prosperous, prey to fierce intestinal wars, to the first plots to recover the inheritance of a Noël Le Graët pilloried. And the need, recognized by all the mandarins of the round ball, to operate a big sweep in the bodies of the most popular sport in the world.
Objective: to make a great palace revolution, to clean the stables of Augeas, to give the feeling that the quasi-autocratic era, and nevertheless triumphant (a World Cup in 2018, a final lost in 2022), of a president in purgatory , is just a bad memory, a racing accident to be erased as soon as possible. Who to embody this renewal? What personality of international stature can convey this message?
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So, the name of Michel Platini, the man with three Golden Balls (1983, 1984, 1985), the brilliant number 10 of the France team and Juventus Turin, comes back insistently. His supporters are all waiting for the former boss of UEFA, the supreme body of European football which he led from 2007 to 2015, to come out of the woods, officially announce his candidacy for the position and short-circuit his potential rivals as quickly as possible. , such as Jean-Michel Aulas (powerful president of Olympique Lyonnais and member of the executive committee of the FFF), Frédéric Thiriez (lawyer and former boss of the Professional Football League) or a few others.
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All, of course, valid on a permanent exile of the pariah Le Graët, not yet completely removed from the game – he has been suspended from his duties pending the final report of the audit carried out by the Ministry of Sports. They dream of a media Blitzkrieg of the player with millimeter crossbars and a magic kick. Their credo: Platini is the only one to have an international reputation and a perfect knowledge of football authorities. He would be the ideal candidate for them.
His adversaries are waiting for him at the turn
Some players from the 1998 world champion team, often close to Zinedine Zidane, barely hide their wish to see a Platini-Zidane tandem lead this “Clean hands” operation. Platinum at the controls of the FFF machine; Zidane as the new coach, replacing Didier Deschamps, who is now too closely linked to the excommunicated Le Graët. “DD” has become collateral damage from the crash of the former mayor of Guingamp (1995-2008). Does the case flow from source?
Not really, because Michel Platini, 67, knows that his opponents are waiting for him around the corner, will slyly remind him of the Swiss court case, which he experienced as a Chinese torture, that of the 2 million Swiss francs (1, 8 million euros) which he would have received in a way that did not comply with the law of Sepp Blatter, then president of FIFA. He was acquitted at first instance, but the Swiss prosecution appealed. His lawyers repeat over and over again that he was the victim of a plot fomented by the current FIFA president, Gianni Infantino, that proceedings have been brought in France against the latter to return his honor to their client for good.
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His friends advise him to take action, despite this handicap, reminding him of his own philosophy of the game: “The best defense is attack. Why, indeed, a guilty man would expose himself in full light, knowing that he will be the target of a shower of stink bombs? For the time being, anyone who does not carry the style of play of Didier Deschamps in his heart, blocked, tactical in the extreme, leaves little room for panache and inspiration, hesitates to franchise the Rubicon. His return would be a small revolution, not only in the structures of the FFF, but also in the style of play of the French team, which could become more flamboyant, more mobile. A return to “French flair” ? The games are far from over. The match, still behind the scenes, has only just begun…