Gonalons slams France's Under-21 quintet after nightclub row

The Lyon centre-mid lambasted the actions of the five players who went out socialising in Paris before a crucial play-off for the 2013 European competition in midweek
Olympique Lyonnais midfielder Maxime Gonalons has criticised the five France Under-21 players who were accused of going out to a nightclub on the eve of an important European Championship qualifier suggesting they have done nothing to improve the battered reputation of French football.

The five-man group included Yann M'Vila, Chris Mavinga (both Rennes), M'Baye Niang (AC Milan), Wissam Ben Yedder (Toulouse) and Antoine Griezmann (Real Sociedad). The quintet went out to socialise ahead of their second-leg play-off against Norway U21, which France lost 5-3, being eliminated 5-4 on aggregate.

Gonalons, himself a former U21 player, was part of the senior squad who managed a 1-1 draw against world and European champions Spain in World Cup qualifying on Tuesday, and the 23-year-old lambasted the actions of the aforementioned players, maintaining that their actions are damaging the profile of football in France.

"This is not good, they are not things to do," Gonalons told RMC Sport.

"We must be professional. We know that French football is widely criticised, and now we must learn to [restore the image]. Some [of these players] have not been able to do this."

Rennes have since suspended both M'Vila and Mavinga, with the duo featuring in a reserve game on Saturday, with Ben Yedder benched in Toulouse's win over Evian in Ligue 1.