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Television dealsEdit

On 1 April 2010, the LFP announced that the league had reached a broadcasting agreement with Italian channel Sportitalia. The channel will broadcast Ligue 1 games for the next two seasons beginning with the 2010–11 season. Sportitalia will show one or two live matches a week and will also air a weekly highlights show.[1] A similar deal was reached a week later with Hong Kong telecommunications company PCCW who will broadcast Ligue 1 matches in the country for the next two seasons.[2] On 7 May, the president of the Ligue de Football Professionnel, Frédéric Thiriez, announced that the organization had reached a two-year deal with Eurosport to broadcast Ligue 2 matches. The deal is worth €10 million a year and guarantees the channel broadcasting rights to the annual Monday night Ligue 2 match.[3]

Le Classique in TunisiaEdit

On 2 April, the LFP announced that, for the second consecutive season, the Trophée des champions will be held on international soil. The match will be played in Tunis, Tunisia, at the Stade 7 Novembre and will be contested by the winner of Ligue 1, Olympique de Marseille and the winner of the Coupe de France, Paris Saint-Germain. The match will be played on either Tuesday, 27 July, or Friday, 30 July. Like last year, the idea will be to promote French football abroad, but this time more specifically in Africa and the Arab world.[4]

New channel in 2012Edit

On 7 May 2010, the president of the Ligue de Football Professionnel, Frédéric Thiriez, confirmed that the organization was interested in creating its own television channel for the broadcasting Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 matches. Thiriez referred to the channel as "an investment for the future" and that the channel will not come to fruition until the conclusion of the organization's television deals with pay channels Canal+, Orange and SFR, which expires in 2012.[3]

Artificial pitch switchEdit

On 17 May 2010, the Ligue de Football Professionnel announced that, for the first time in French football history, two clubs, Lorient and Nancy, will switch the surface of their football pitch from grass to artificial turf. This type of surface is common in North America and Eastern Europe, but is considered rare in Western Europe. Both clubs attributed the switch to weather and ecological problems with severe cold fronts affecting their region every winter. The switch would, in turn, reduce energy costs and also avoid cancellations of matches due to a frozen pitch. Also, in Lorient's case, a constant proliferation of earthworms onto their pitch over the past two seasons have led to a rapid deterioration of the ground, which has forced the club to spend as much as 2 million to replace it. Both clubs will have pre-season tours of Russia, Austria, and Norway to become better acclimated with the surface.[5]

New national team managerEdit

On 16 May 2010, Laurent Blanc confirmed his departure from Bordeaux after three seasons in charge of the French outfit. After resigning from his position, Blanc contacted the French Football Federation (FFF) to inquire about the France national team job, which will be vacated by Raymond Domenech following the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Later that day, FFF president Jean-Pierre Escalettes confirmed that Blanc was a candidate for the position. On 18 May 2010, with Blanc's appointment to the position becoming more probable, Bordeaux chairman Jean-Louis Triaud demanded compensation from the FFF. On 20 May 2010, the club reached an agreement with the Federation for 1.5 million. Blanc will not be named the coach of the team until the end of the World Cup.[6][7]

Evian stadium moveEdit

After earning promotion to Ligue 2 for the 2010–11 season, Evian were rumored to be pursuing a move to play their home matches at the Stade de la Praille in Geneva, Switzerland, after it was determined that their current facility, the Stade Joseph-Moynat, did not meet the Ligue de Football Professionnel (LFP)'s standards. Thonon-les-Bains, the commune where the club situates itself, is a few kilometers from the Swiss border and is only 34.6 kilometres (21.5 mi), a 45-minute car drive, from the city of Geneva. It was reported that the club's president, Patrick Trotignon, had been in the process of advocating for the move since the beginning of the 2009–10 Championnat National season just in case the club had achieved promotion to the second division. The vice-president of Swiss club Servette FC, who occupy the stadium, questioned the move, citing possible schedule conflicts as well as the health of the pitch if both clubs were to use the stadium on a weekly basis.[8] His claims, however, were refuted by Benoît Genecand, who serves as president of Fondation du Stade de Genève (FSG), which owns and operates the facility. The club responded immediately to Genecand's comments via a press release posted on the club's official website.[9]

Evian petitioned to the State Council of Geneva and obtained approval from the LFP for the move in early May. On 20 May 2010, Evian received a favorable ruling from the FFF with the Federal Council voting in favor of the move. According to the FFF, the move now had to be agreed upon by a UEFA executive committee, which is composed of 17 officials.[10][11] On 8 June, UEFA officially denied Evian's request to play at the Stade de la Praille, meaning the club will likely play its home matches at the Parc des Sports in nearby Annecy.[12]

Five referee system for cupEdit

On 20 August 2010, the LFP confirmed that the Coupe de la Ligue would utilized the five-referee system that is currently being used in the UEFA Champions League and the UEFA Europa League. The announcement makes the Coupe de la Ligue the first national cup competition in Europe to adopt the system and was approved by the International Football Association Board (IFAB) on 21 July. The system officially began on 24 August with the start of the second round matches and will be in place until the final in April 2011.[13]

DNCG rulingsEdit

NationalEdit

On 15 June 2010, following a study of each club's administrative and financial accounts in the Championnat National, the DNCG ruled that both Bastia and Gueugnon would be relegated to the Championnat de France amateur, while Amiens, Guingamp and Strasbourg were having their accounts subjected to further deliberation in order to determine whether each club could retain its professional status.[14][15] Both Bastia and Gueugnon had the option to appeal the decision. On 25 June 2010, the Corsican Assembly and the General Council of Haute-Corse approved grants of €800,000 and €150,000 to be given to Bastia in order for the club to meet the DNCG's financial requirements, which will allow the club to remain in the Championnat National.[16] On 6 July, however, the DNCG remained firm on its stance relegating the club to the fourth division after questioning the legitimacy of the grants. Bastia president Julien Lolli remained confident that the club would play in the Championnat National and formerly made an appeal to the CNOSF, the National Sporting Committee of France, the same day.[17] On 2 July, the DNCG announced that Gueugnon would remain in National after the club successfully appealed to the organization.[18] On 16 July, the CNOSF ruled against the DNCG and announced that Bastia should play in the Championnat National.[19] The club's place in the league was confirmed upon the release of the league table.

On 2 July, local media in Alsace reported that Strasbourg were on the verge of being relegated to the Championnat de France amateur by the DNCG due to financial issues.[20] The club responded by announcing its willingness to appeal if the news reported was confirmed. With the club's accounts still being reviewed, Strasbourg's financial issues were slightly alleviated after the sale of striker Magaye Gueye to English club Everton for €1.4 million.[21] Strasbourg later transferred captain Guillaume Lacour and Algerian international Yacine Bezzaz to Evian and Troyes, respectively, for nominal fees. On 16 July, the report was confirmed when the DNCG officially relegated Strasbourg to the CFA. Strasbourg will appeal the decision next week.[22]

CFAEdit

On 15 June 2010, following a study of each club's administrative and financial accounts in the Championnat de France amateur, the DNCG ruled that Besançon RC, Hyères FC, CS Louhans-Cuiseaux, FC Montceau Bourgogne, EDS Montluçon, Olympique Noisy-le-Sec, and RCF Paris would be relegated to the Championnat de France amateur 2. The organization also ruled that newly promoted club Calais RUFC would be excluded from ascending up to the fourth division, while SO Cassis Carnoux, which had been relegated from the Championnat National, would also be excluded from the league. The second place club in Calais' group, CMS Oissel, who was set to replace Calais was also denied promotion to the Championnat de France amateur. All clubs had the option to appeal the decision.[15]

On 7 July, Besançon, Hyères, and Oissel's appeals were heard by the DNCG Appeals Committee and, following deliberation and explanations from each club, the committee ruled in favor of Besançon, but upheld the appeals of Hyères and Oissel. The following day, the appeals committee granted both Louhans-Cuiseaux and Noisy-le-Sec appeals to stay in the fourth division.[23][24][25] The committee, however, upheld the rulings of Calais, Montceau Bourgogne, Montluçon, and Racing Paris.[26]

Referee suspensionEdit

On 5 March 2011, the FFF confirmed through an official statement on its website that referees who were scheduled to officiate the 5–6 March matches would be barred from officiating them after it was revealed that the referees, who are all members of the Syndicat des Arbitres de Football Elite (SAFE), the referee's union, would purposely delay the start time of matches in response the overall "profound disrespect for referees from everyone involved in football". On its official website, the FFF regretted SAFE's decision and also accused the group of attempted blackmail.[27] The referees were replaced by their counterparts in the Championnat National, the third level of French football, for the week.[28]

Under-17 team record winEdit

On 30 March 2011, the national under-17 team of France recorded a 9–0 win over Belarus in the Elite Round qualification for the 2011 UEFA European Under-17 Football Championship. The result is the biggest victory ever in Elite Round qualification history.[29] The goals were scored by Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Abdallah Yaisien, who scored four; Caen striker Lenny Nangis, who scored a hat trick; Sébastien Haller of Auxerre, who converted a stoppage time penalty; and Athletic Bilbao defender Aymeric Laporte, who scored a first-half goal.[30] The victory progressed the team to the final tournament.

Investigation into alleged quotaEdit

On 28 April 2011, French investigative website Mediapart released a story which claimed that the FFF had been attempting to secretly put in place a race-quota system in order to limit the number of black and Arab players in its national academies. Quoting a senior figure in the FFF, the organisation was said to have wanted to set a cap of 30% on the number of players of non-white origin by limiting places in the academies in the 12–13 age bracket.[31] The FFF responded by releasing a public statement on its website denying the report stating "none of its elected bodies has been validated, or even contemplated a policy of quotas for the recruitment of its training centers".[32] The FFF also announced that it has authorized a full investigation into the matter and, as a result, suspended National Technical Director François Blaquart pending the outcome of the investigation.[33]

On 29 April, national team manager Laurent Blanc, who, in the report, was claimed to have agreed with the decision to implement the quotas, held a personal press conference at the l'Hôtel Le Régent in Bordeaux, in which he also denied the report declaring that he had "not heard of such a project".[34] On the following day, after Mediapart announced that it had a taped audio recording of the November 2010 meeting, Blanc released a statement on the FFF's website in which he apologized for possible offending comments he made during the meeting, while also declaring he was misquoted and denying he was racist, stating, "I do not withdraw the remarks I made yesterday. I admit that some terms used during a meeting on a sensitive subject can be ambiguous, out of context, and, if in my case, I've hurt some feelings, I apologize. But being suspected of racism or xenophobia, which I am against all forms of discrimination, I do not support it."[35]

Former national team player Lilian Thuram said of the allegations, "Initially I thought this was a joke. I'm so stunned I don't know what to say," while Patrick Vieira declared that the comments Blanc allegedly made at the meeting made were "serious and scandalous". The French government also gave opinions on the matter. President Nicolas Sarkozy was quoted as being "viscerally opposed to any form of quota", while adding "setting quotas would be the end of the Republic". National Sports Minister Chantal Jouanno echoed the President's sentiments, while also demanding that the FFF "shed light" on a report.[36] Blanc was defended by several former players, most notably his 1998 World Cup-winning teammates Christophe Dugarry, Bixente Lizarazu, Didier Deschamps, Zinedine Zidane, Marcel Desailly and Emmanuel Petit, current players such as current national team captain Alou Diarra, and external sources, which included Pathé Diba, the president of L'Association Soutien aux Handicapés Africains (English: Association to Support the Disabled in Africa).[37][38][39][40][41] On 9 May, Blanc gave testimony at a hearing set up by the FFF to investigate the quota matter. The results of the inquiry will be revealed on 10 May.

Promotion and relegationEdit

Managerial changesEdit

Ligue 1Edit

Team Outgoing head coach Manner of departure Date of vacancy Table Incoming head coach Date of appointment Table
Bordeaux   Laurent Blanc Mutual consent 16 May 2010[42] Off-season   Jean Tigana 25 May 2010[43] Off-season

In-seasonEdit

Team Outgoing head coach Manner of departure Date of vacancy Position in table Incoming head coach Date of appointment Position in table
Arles-Avignon   Michel Estevan Sacked 16 September 2010[44] 20th   Faruk Hadžibegić 2 October 2010[45] 20th
Lens   Jean-Guy Wallemme Resigned 2 January 2011 19th   László Bölöni 2 January 2011[46] 19th
Monaco   Guy Lacombe Sacked 10 January 2011 17th   Laurent Banide 10 January 2011[47] 17th
Bordeaux   Jean Tigana Resigned 7 May 2011 9th   Eric Bédouet 7 May 2011[48] 9th

Ligue 2Edit

Team Outgoing manager Manner of departure Date of vacancy Table Incoming manager Date of appointment Table
Reims   Marc Collat Mutual consent 16 May 2010 Off-season   Hubert Fournier 18 May 2010[49] Off-season
Châteauroux   Jean-Pierre Papin Resigned 18 May 2010[50] Off-season   Didier Tholot 1 June 2010[51] Off-season
Metz   Joël Muller Mutual consent 14 May 2010 Off-season   Dominique Bijotat 4 June 2010[52] Off-season
Troyes   Patrick Rémy Mutual consent 22 June 2010[53] Off-season   Jean-Marc Furlan 23 June 2010[54] Off-season

In-seasonEdit

Team Outgoing manager Manner of departure Date of vacancy Table Incoming manager Date of appointment Table
Grenoble   Mehmed Baždarević Mutual consent 1 September 2010 20th   Yvon Pouliquen 6 September 2010[55] 20th
Nîmes   Jean-Michel Cavalli Contract terminated 8 November 2010 17th   Noël Tosi 8 November 2010 17th
Boulogne   Laurent Guyot Contract terminated 27 December 2010[56] 12th   Michel Estevan 30 December 2010[57] 12th
Nîmes   Noël Tosi Contract terminated 2 March 2011[58] 17th   Thierry Froger 2 March 2011[59] 17th
Nantes   Baptiste Gentili Resigned 6 March 2011[60] 15th   Philippe Anziani 6 March 2011 15th

Championnat NationalEdit

Team Outgoing manager Manner of departure Date of vacancy Table Incoming manager Date of appointment Table
Guingamp   Victor Zvunka Resigned 15 May 2010[61] Off-season   Jocelyn Gourvennec 17 May 2010[62] Off-season
Bastia   Faruk Hadzibegic Resigned 17 May 2010 Off-season   Frédéric Hantz 22 May 2010[63] Off-season
Créteil   Laurent Fournier Resigned 21 May 2010[64] Off-season   Hubert Velud 25 May 2010[65] Off-season
Strasbourg   Pascal Janin Resigned 29 May 2010 Off-season   Laurent Fournier 9 June 2010[66] Off-season
Gueugnon   René Le Lamer End of contract 21 May 2010 Off-season   Serge Romano 7 July 2010[67] Off-season
Gap   Franck Priou Signed for Martigues 31 May 2010[68] Off-season   Patrick Bruzzichessi 6 June 2010[69] Off-season

In-seasonEdit

Team Outgoing manager Manner of departure Date of vacancy Table Incoming manager Date of appointment Table
Alfortville   William Longuet Fired 5 October 2010[70] 21st   Azzedine Meguellatti 23 November 2010[71] 21st
Cannes   Albert Emon Fired 31 January 2011[72] 5th   Victor Zvunka 31 January 2011[73] 5th

TransfersEdit

CompetitionsEdit

Competition Winner Details Match Report
Ligue 1 Lille 2010–11 Ligue 1
Ligue 2 Evian 2010–11 Ligue 2
Championnat National Bastia 2010–11 Championnat National
Championnat de France amateur Gazélec Ajaccio 2010–11 Championnat de France amateur
Championnat de France amateur 2 Chambéry 2010–11 Championnat de France amateur 2
Division 1 Féminine Lyon 2010–11 Division 1 Féminine
Coupe de France Lille 2010–11 Coupe de France
Beat Paris SG 1–0
Report
Coupe de la Ligue Marseille 2010–11 Coupe de la Ligue
Beat Montpellier 1–0
Report
Challenge de France Saint-Étienne 2010–11 Challenge de France
Beat Montpellier 3–2 on penalties
Report
Coupe Gambardella Monaco 2010–11 Coupe Gambardella
Beat Saint-Étienne 4–3 on penalties
Report
Trophée des Champions Marseille 2010 Trophée des Champions
Beat Paris SG 5–4 on penalties
Report[permanent dead link]

International competitionsEdit

Men'sEdit

Team / Competition UEFA Champions League UEFA Europa League
Marseille Round of 16
eliminated by
  Manchester United
did not qualify
Lyon Round of 16
eliminated by
  Real Madrid
did not qualify
Auxerre Group stage
eliminated
did not qualify
Montpellier did not qualify Third qualifying round
eliminated by
  Győri ETO
Lille did not qualify Round of 32
eliminated by
  PSV
Paris Saint-Germain did not qualify Round of 16
eliminated by
  Benfica

Women'sEdit

Team / Competition UEFA Women's Champions League
Lyon Champions
defeated
  Turbine Potsdam in Final
FCF Juvisy Quarterfinals
eliminated by
  Turbine Potsdam

National teamsEdit

FranceEdit

Friendly

UEFA Euro 2012 qualification

Friendly

UEFA Euro 2012 qualification

Friendly

UEFA Euro 2012 qualification

Friendly

Last updated: 15 June 2011
Source: French Football Federation

France (women's)Edit

2011 FIFA Women's World Cup qualification

2011 FIFA Women's World Cup playoff qualification

Friendly

Cyprus Cup

Friendly

2011 FIFA Women's World Cup

Last updated: 16 July 2011
Source: French Football Federation

France U-21Edit

2011 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship qualification

Friendly

Last updated: 5 June 2011
Source: French Football Federation

France U-20Edit

Friendly

Unofficial Friendly

Friendly

Unofficial Friendly

Friendly

2011 Toulon Tournament

Unofficial Friendly

Friendly

2011 FIFA U-20 World Cup

Last updated: 20 August 2011
Source: French Football Federation

France U-19Edit

2010 Sendai Cup

2011 UEFA European Under-19 Football Championship qualification

Friendly

Porto Tournament

2011 UEFA European Under-19 Football Championship Elite Round qualification

Last updated: 25 May 2011
Source: French Football Federation

France U-18Edit

Friendly

Tournio de Limoges

Winter Tournament

Friendly

Friendly

Friendly

Last updated: 12 May 2011
Source: French Football Federation

France U-17Edit

Serbia Tournament

Friendly

2011 UEFA European Under-17 Football Championship qualification

2011 UEFA European Under-17 Football Championship Elite Round qualification

Friendly

2011 UEFA European Under-17 Football Championship

Friendly

2011 FIFA U-17 World Cup

Last updated: 4 July 2011
Source: French Football Federation

France U-16Edit

Friendly

Tournio du Val-de-Marne

Friendly

2011 Aegean Cup