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France chief writes to Argentina about Martinez’s Mbappe taunts

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Argentina goalkeeper Emi Martinez in celebration in Buenos Aires. | PHOTO: Fotmob |
  • Argentina goalkeeper Emi Martinez brutally trolled Kylian Mbappe during celebrations after winning the World Cup
  • Martinez was pictured holding a doll with the face of Kylian Mbappe in Buenos Aires Argentina
  • President of French football Noel Le Graet has written to Argentina complaining of Martinez’s behaviour

Noel Le Graet wrote the Argentine Football Association to express his displeasure at what he called “abnormal” and “awful” remarks directed towards France striker Kylian Mbappe.

On Sunday, Mbappe became just the second player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup final, but France lost on penalties to Argentina after a thrilling 3-3 draw.

After winning their third championship, La Albiceleste was met with scenes of wild celebrations at home. On Tuesday, the team’s victory parade in Buenos Aires was cut short due to heavy traffic.

In the midst of the jubilation, Emiliano Martinez, the goalkeeper for Argentina who turned away a penalty shot from Kingsley Coman in the shootout, was seen holding a doll with Mbappe’s face on it.

Emi Martinez

Argentina goalkeeper Emi Martinez holds a doll with the face of France forward Kylian Mbappe. | PHOTO: The Mirror |

Adil Rami, a former France defender, referred to the Aston Villa goalkeeper as “the most loathed man in the world of football” after seeing footage on social media of Martinez requesting “a moment of silence” for the Paris Saint-Germain front in the locker room following the match.

Le Graet, head of the French Football Federation, stated in an interview with Ouest-France: “We have started different procedures. It’s quite shocking.

“These are boys who have given the best of themselves for the France team to succeed. It is important that we support them.

“I wrote to my counterpart from the Argentine Football Association. I find these excesses abnormal in the context of a sports competition, and I find it difficult to understand.

“It goes too far. Mbappe’s behaviour was exemplary.”

While Mbappe increased his total number of World Cup goals to 12 by winning the Golden Boot in Qatar, fellow France forward Karim Benzema missed the competition due to a thigh injury before declaring his retirement from international competition this week.

Emi Martinez

Argentina goalkeeper Emi Martinez celebrated controversially after receiving the award of the goalkeeper of the tournament in the 2022 FIFA World Cup. | PHOTO: Goal |

La Graet did not find the Ballon d’Or winner’s choice surprising, but she denied Benzema could have travelled back to Qatar to play in the World Cup championship game.

“He probably intends to focus 100 per cent on his club after having several small injuries,” La Graet said.

Asked about reports France considered bringing Benzema back for the final, he added: “To my knowledge, he returned to training very recently; in no case could he have played.

“The staff did the right thing, and they wanted him to leave very quickly to see his doctors in Madrid.”

Nathan Sialah is a journalist by profession with interest in politics, sports, cryptocurrency and human interests with 5 years experience in Radio and Digital Journalism. This has helped Sialah develop a responsible approach to any task he undertakes or any situation that he is presented with.

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