Mbappé's France takes up the flag of multiraciality | Euro Cup Germany 2024 | EUROtoday

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In 1998, after profitable the World Cup as host, the French crew was enthroned as a benchmark for multiraciality. The mixture of gamers with North African (Zidane), Antillean (Thuram), Oceanic (Karembeu) ancestry and native footballers equivalent to Dugarry, Barthez and the present coach Didier Deschamps gave France its first World Cup. The second, in Russia, in 2018, with Mbappé, Griezmann, Kanté, Pogba, Lloris or Giroud was affirmation that mixing might be as profitable as it’s enriching.

This Sunday, in the future earlier than the debut towards Austria in Düsseldorf (9:00 p.m. TVE), and within the face of the specter of a repeat within the legislative elections on June 30 of the victory achieved within the European elections by the National Regrouping chaired by the far-right Marine Le Pen, Mbappé took up for the tricolor crew the flag of range and multicultural coexistence raised by the '98 internationals. “I don't like extremes, those that divide,” warned the model new Real Madrid signing within the press room of the charming Arena Stadion in Düsseldorf.

Raised within the Paris suburb of Bondie, Mbappé's speech was aimed toward taking the baton of Zinedine Zidane as the logo and captain of the French crew to oppose ultranationalism. Zidane already attacked Jean Marie Le Pen, Marine's father, within the 2002 elections after he questioned the id purity of the '98 crew. “We have to think about the consequences that voting for a party that does not correspond to nothing with the values ​​of France. I am French. My father is Algerian. “I am proud to be French and I am proud that my father is Algerian,” proclaimed Zidane, who supported the conservative Jacques Chirac. In 2017, as coach of Real Madrid, in a press conference, Zidane also positioned himself against Marine Le Pen and asked for the vote for Emmanuel Macron. “My position is the same as in 2002,” he said then.

Chosen by Deschamps as captain after the World Cup in Qatar, Mbappé debuts the armband today in a major national team competition. During the week he has had to deal with an issue that he has gone growing up in the rooms and common rooms of the French retreat outside Paderborn. First it was Ousmane Dembélé who on Thursday made a mere call for a massive vote. On Saturday, Marcus Thuram – his father Lilian was a member of the 98 team and is a renowned activist for solidarity and integration causes – was more direct. “The situation is sad, very serious. I found out about the National Regrouping victory after Sunday's game against Canada and we were all a little shocked in the locker room. We have to tell everyone to go vote and fight daily so that the RN does not win,” said the Inter Milan attacker. This is Mbappé's close friend since they both met in the lower categories of the French team. His captain defended him: “I don't think he went one step further. He talked about values, diversity, tolerance and respect. To me, he didn't go too far. I think we are still in a country where there is freedom of expression and he gave his opinion and I agree with him.”

If on Saturday the French federation invited in a statement not to politicize the national team and on Sunday Deschamps announced that as coach he will not talk about the issue until after the Euro Cup, Mbappé ended up breaking the deck. “Many times we say that we should not mix politics with listening. I agree when it comes to routine matters, but when it comes to situations like this it is very important,” Mbappé warned.

Expected as the big star of this Euro Cup and as the player destined to govern France on the field, Mbappé does not consider that his statements or those of his teammates influence the team's performance. “We are very aware of the importance of the match against Austria. “We are in a competition to defend the colors of our country,” he concluded.

Some discomfort in his knee and back have kept Mbappé out of some training sessions. On Thursday, he was in the gym. He emerged from the entrance to the locker room in the final minutes, when his teammates were playing one of those intense little games on a small field. After exchanging a few words with the physios and giving some autographs to the organization's volunteers, Mbappé stood on the side of the field. He concentrated and silently followed every action of the game. He emulated a captain checking the status of the troops before entering combat. He only saved a shot from Griezmann to the post, a bicycle kick from Giroud and several dribbles from Dembélé. All of them examples of the multiracial France that Mbappé defended yesterday.

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