François Hollande “wouldn’t go” if he was still president

Sif I was the head of state, I would not go”said the former French president (2012-2017) during a meeting devoted to the future of sport at the Maison de la Radio in Paris.

“I cannot ask football players (…) not to go to a competition for which they have been preparing for years”he pointed out.

The former tenant of the Elysée recalled that a certain number of sportsmen had committed themselves to different causes – against racism, on the climate issue or human rights.

“Being sporty is not just playing with a ball and running fast, it’s also having a social role and it’s not so easy to impose this responsibility on the players”said François Hollande.

“When Mbappé takes a position on a subject, it will considerably mobilize a certain number of young people (…) when we see the number of followers on social networks”he added.

In France, the deputies of the LFI party (radical left) castigated Thursday the holding of the World Cup-2022 in Qatar, evoking the “abuse of immigrant workers” and the “open-air air-conditioned matches”claiming a “strong political response from the French authorities”.

Calls not to follow the World Cup in Qatar, criticized on human rights or the environment, are beginning to appear two months before the start of the competition, without meeting a massive echo for the time being.

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