the FFF denounces “the seriousness” of the behavior of players refusing to wear the rainbow jersey but will not sanction them

Patrick Anton, the president of the authority, however specified, Monday, that he would propose to the players to meet the CNE in order to explain “the reasons for which one considers their position inappropriate”.

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Ajaccien Ivane Chegra and Parisian Warren Zaire-Emery in a duel with their rainbow flocked jerseys, May 13, 2023. (IBRAHIM EZZAT / AFP)

Toulouse, Nantes, Guingamp… In several Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 clubs, the initiative of the Professional Football League (LFP) has fueled the debate. In an open letter to players who refused to wear the anti-homophobia rainbow jersey last weekend, the French Football Federation’s (FFF) National Ethics Council (CNE) said thus underlined, Monday, May 15, “the seriousness of their behavior and error” of these and called them to “putting aside certain personal convictions to adhere to a common base”.

“For those who do not feel concerned by the fight against homophobia, wearing a rainbow number as part of a national action organized by French professional football must be part of these compromises and cannot present a unbearable charactercan we read in the press release. Even if they are not aware of it, they are complicit in homophobic behavior.”

No disciplinary sanction from the FFF against the players

Patrick Anton, the president of the CNE, explained, on RTL, that there would be “no penalties” towards the players concerned. “We want to do educational work and we don’t want to be a disciplinary bodyhe specified. On the other hand, we offer them to meet us so that we can explain to them the reasons why we consider that their position is not appropriate. Players who spoke out said it was out of religious belief. That homosexuality is in certain proscribed religions, we want to hear it. But that doesn’t stop them from supporting this cause.”

“Then, we must all be concerned by all forms of discrimination and not only by certain ones, added Patrick Anton. We must not forget that professional players are considered by young people as role models. They are sources of inspiration. We scrutinize their behavior, and therefore footballers have an image to convey and must act accordingly. In its open letter, the CNE nevertheless expressed its satisfaction, recalling that “the individual behavior of a few should not overshadow the success of this initiative”.

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