Mbappe says FFF boss denied racist abuse that pushed him towards retirement

Kylian Mbappe has accused the French Football Federation’s (FFF) president of denying the barrage of racist abuse that pushed him to consider quitting the French national team.

Mbappe, who helped France to World Cup glory in Russia four years ago aged just 19, suffered racial abuse on social media last summer after his country’s exit from Euro 2020 last summer.

The Paris Saint-Germain forward missed the decisive penalty as France suffered a shock exit to Switzerland on penalties at the last-16 stage.

FFF president Noel Le Graet told Le Journal du Dimanche that after the tournament, he held talks with Mbappe, who signalled he was prepared to walk out on the world champions as he felt he was not given the right level of support.

Noel Le Graet during the International Friendly Game football match between France and Finland on November 11, 2020 at Stade de France in Saint-Denis, France - Photo Stephane Allaman / DPPI STEPHANE ALLAMAN / DPPI / Europa 11/11/2020 (Europa Press via AP)
Image: Noel Le Graet said Mbappe felt the FFF had not defended him after his missed penalty at Euro 2020

Le Graet told Le Journal du Dimanche: “He thought that the federation had not defended him after his missed penalty and the criticism on social media. He no longer wanted to play for the France team.”

However, Mbappe took to social media on Sunday to offer a different view on the conversation with Le Graet, who he says overlooked his claims of racism.

Mbappe tweeted: “Actually I explained to him very well that it was in relation to racism and not to the penalty. But he concluded that there had been no racism.”

Mbappe returned to play for France, scoring in the semi-final and final of their victorious Nations League campaign, and also securing their spot at the World Cup in Qatar with four goals against Kazakhstan in November.

Mbappe’s statement comes after FIFA published their report into social media abuse, which found that more than half the players who played in the Euro 2020 and Africa Cup of Nations finals were abused online before, during and after the game – with more than 80 per cent involving homophobic and racist insults.

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