French prime minister to blame for Benzema Euro 2016 snub, says lawyer

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The Real Madrid striker has been ruled out of the running for France's Euro 2016 squad and his representative believes he has been treated unfairly by the head of government

Karim Benzema's lawyer has blamed his nation's prime minister Manuel Valls for the Real Madrid striker's omission from the France squad for Euro 2016.

Benzema was suspended from national team duty by the French Football Federation (FFF) in December pending the outcome of a legal investigation into an alleged plot to blackmail fellow international Mathieu Valbuena. 

Although the investigation is ongoing, FFF president Noel Le Graet and national team coach Didier Deschamps have decided Benzema will not be reinstated for the European Championship this summer.

Prime minister Valls stressed in March that the Madrid attacker did not deserve to represent France so long as the Valbuena case was ongoing, also criticising Benzema for being a bad example, and the player's representative, Eric Dupont-Moretti, believes those comments played a big role in the final decision.

GOAL READ MORE  | How France could line up without Benzema

"The prime minister interfered," Dupont-Moretti told RMC. "I blame him for getting involved. That's not his job.

"I have been told that Karim has never caused any problems within the team. Had this decision been a technical one, then we would have had nothing to say about it.

"I hope that Karim's absence will not hurt the team's chances at Euro 2016.

"I spoke to Karim on the phone. Of course this affects him. He is obviously suffering.

"We will not go to court in an attempt to force a return to the national team."


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