'Everybody has the right to speak publicly' - Anelka defends Nasri Euro 2012 outburst

The Frenchman has hit back at his compatriot's critics, insisting the Manchester City star was well within his rights to direct an angry tirade at the media
Nicolas Anelka has defended Samir Nasri’s expletive-laden rant at reporters after France were defeated in the quarter-finals of Euro 2012 by Spain.

Nasri had taken a hostile stance toward the French media during the tournament, directing a 'shushing' gesture at them following his goal against England.

And, after Les Blues exit to the eventual winners Spain, the Manchester City playmaker turned the air blue by aiming an angry tirade at the waiting press.

However, Shanghai Shenhua striker Anelka has defended his compatriot, insisting he should be allowed to air his thoughts in public just like anyone else.

"In France, everybody has the right to speak publicly,” he told French broadcaster TF1.

“The media can do it, normal people can do it, and so can Nasri.

"So when the media try to provoke a player, they really want the player to say something in response. Nasri gave them something they really wanted.

“Anyway, I think what he did was right."

Nasri was handed a three-match ban by the French Football Federation following a disciplinary hearing into the incident.

Anelka saw his international career effectively ended in 2010 after the FFF handed him an 18-match ban for his role in the French squad's revolt against Raymond Domenech during the World Cup in South Africa.