France Soccer players
- Four players from France's national soccer team have been punished
- The French Football Federation suspended them after events at World Cup
- Players faced disciplinary action for their poor performance and behavior
- The French were knocked out of the tournament at the group stage in June
Paris, France (CNN) - Four members of the French national soccer team were punished by a disciplinary commission Tuesday following an inquiry into the team's much-criticized performance and behavior at this year's World Cup.
The French Football Federation's commission announced that striker Nicolas Anelka - whose expulsion from the tournament in June sparked a revolt by his teammates - was suspended for 18 international games.
Former team captain Patrice Evra was suspended for five games and his deputy Franck Ribery received a three-game ban, while Jeremy Toulalan was ruled out for one match.
The commission said it did not suspend defender Eric Abidal after hearing his explanations for refusing to play in the final group match against South Africa.
Manchester United defender Evra, Lyon midfielder Toulalan and Barcelona's Abidal were said to have met with the commission in Paris Tuesday.
Ribery and Anelka, who play in Germany and England for clubs Bayern Munich and Chelsea respectively, were not present at the meeting but were represented by lawyers at the session. Anelka's ban could effectively end the 31-year-old's international career.
The players have the right to appeal the commission's decision, the FFF said.
France, which won the World Cup in 1998 and lost in the final four years ago, was forced out of this year's tournament early on, during the group stage.
The team's troubles began after an argument between Anelka and former head coach Raymond Domenech during the game with Mexico. After the FFF expelled Anelka from the tournament, other team members huddled in a bus the next day and refused to train for their next match.
The FFF summoned the five players last week along with Domenech, his assistant Alain Boghossian, former FFF President Jean-Pierre Escalettes and former FFF official Jean-Louis Valentin.
You might also like
PLAYMOBIL France Soccer Player Toy
Toy (Playmobil - Cranbury)
Sparkling Crystal Embellished Heart Shaped Soccer Stud Earrings "I LOVE SOCCER" Sports Fan Jewelry