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France Women's Football Coach Sacked

FILE: France women's football team coach Corinne Diacre. Taken Oct. 7, 2022.
FILE: France women's football team coach Corinne Diacre. Taken Oct. 7, 2022.

PARIS - Corinne Diacre has been turfed as coach of the France women's team, the French Football Federation (FFF) announced on Thursday, after her position was weakened following a revolt by leading players.

The 48-year-old was under contract until 2024 but came under serious pressure after captain Wendie Renard announced last month she would no longer play for the team, with fellow stars Kadidiatou Diani and Marie-Antoinette Katoto following suit.

The announcement comes just over four months before the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, where a France side ranked fifth in the world will hope to feature prominently.

The French federation - itself in crisis following the recent resignation of its scandal-hit 81-year-old president Noel Le Graet - said its own investigation had exposed "a major fracture with senior players" which had "reached a point of no-return that was damaging the team's interests".

"The FFF acknowledges the implication, and the seriousness with which Corinne Diacre and her staff have done their job, but it seems the problems are, in this context, irreversible," it added.

"In view of this, it has been decided to bring an end to Corinne Diacre's job at the head of the France women's team."

However, no new coach has been appointed, with France next due to play home friendly matches against Colombia and Olympic champions Canada in April.

Under Diacre, France lost to the United States in the quarter-finals as they hosted the 2019 World Cup.

Les Bleues then lost to Germany in the semi-finals of last year's European Championship in England.

Diacre had been hoping to stay in the position until after next year's Olympics in Paris.