The French Football Federation (FFF) have confirmed that they will attempt to impose a ban on Nicolas Anelka after the Manchester City striker rejected a call-up to the national team.
The FFF have reacted angrily and approached FIFA with a view to banning the player for two matches.
Article 39 of FIFA’s regulations says players called up for international duty are not allowed to play for their club in the time when they should have been on international duty.
The regulation states: ‘This restriction on playing for the club shall, moreover, be prolonged by five days in the event that the player, for whatsoever reason, did not wish to or was unable to comply with the summons.’
Under the FFF’s regulations, players who refuse to play for the national team can be banned for up to two two games. However, for such a ban to be implemented, the French authorities will need the backing of their English counterpparts. Such support may not be forthcoming especially as the English FA has recently come into conflict with the Premier League clubs and would be reluctant to embark upon another club v country dispute.
Nonetheless, the FFF will try to impose a one-game suspension with immediate effect.
‘The FFF considers that the player Nicolas Anelka issuspended right now for the first official meeting (match) of his club following November 18 2004,’ read a statement on the federation’s website.
‘The French federation is considering asking Anelka’s club to ban him for two matches,’ a French media officer stated on Monday.
‘It’s the federation’s rule in such a case and a plea could be sent to the English soccer federation.
‘If no sanction is taken we will put the case to FIFA.’