why the XV of France refuses to turn its back on Bernard Laporte

Axel May, edited by Gauthier Delomez
06:17, January 31, 2023modified to

3:53 p.m., January 31, 2023

The French rugby team is gathered in Capbreton to prepare for the Six Nations tournament. Trying to ignore the turmoil around the French Federation, the Blues seem to have trouble turning the page on Bernard Laporte, who resigned on Friday. The latter is particularly hailed for his action at the head of the FFR.

In Capbreton in the Landes, the French rugby team is preparing for the first match of the VI Nations tournament, which will take place on Sunday in Rome against Italy. By then, the interim president of the French Rugby Federation will be known. The nominee is expected to be unveiled on Wednesday and formally inducted on Friday. After his conviction for corruption at first instance, Bernard Laporte was indeed forced to resign from the presidency last Friday. But what may surprise is that the France team remains attached to the former president of the federation.

To the question “how did you experience this resignation”, the Toulouse second line Thibaud Flament answers in two stages: “It does not impact us too much. We are really concentrating on training. We are very focused on rugby. Bernard is , I think, a character that we all like in the band. We’re waiting to see what happens.”

Laporte gave the Blues the means of their ambitions

In short, the Blues are concentrating on preparing for the Six Nations tournament, but the departure of Bernard Laporte is far from trivial. On the antenna of Europe 1 on January 24, general manager Raphael Ibanez recalled why he remains appreciated by the XV of France, despite his conviction for corruption. “Everything we experience with the XV of France, we owe it to Bernard Laporte. The World Cup in France is him […] And then, it’s the first time in the history of French rugby that the XV of France has equipped itself with experts, a very complete staff”, he explained.

In other words, Bernard Laporte gave the Blues the means of their ambitions, also allowing professional clubs to make their players more easily available to the XV of France. And because it works, because they are on a record streak of 13 consecutive successes, players are struggling to turn the Laporte page.

Source: Europe1

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