Domenech defends Blanc but slams France players

The former boss of Les Bleus believes that the current coach was let down by his troops in Tuesday's shock 2-0 defeat to already-eliminated Sweden
Former France coach Raymond Domenech has leapt to the defence of current boss Laurent Blanc, but slammed the country's players over a perceived lack of unity.

Despite having qualified for the knockout stages of Euro 2012, Les Bleus have come in for a lot of criticism in the wake of their dismal 2-0 defeat to already-eliminated Sweden in their final outing in Group D.

Domenech, who had to deal with a player mutiny during the 2010 World Cup, has a lot of sympathy for Blanc, believing that the former Bordeaux boss was betrayed by his troops on the night in question.
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"Are they a team aware of what they represent or a collection of individuals?" he asked in his column in Ouest-France. "It is the absence of collective investment on behalf of the players that I despair.

"I watched Laurent standing in front of the bench. He must have been reflecting on what was happening. But did he know? Probably not. Me neither.

"But it's not easy to shape a group. It takes time and we must accept the ups and downs."

France face defending champions Spain in the quarter-finals in Donetsk on Saturday.