Official: Nicolas Anelka Axed From France Squad

The prolific striker will leave South Africa tonight...
France striker Nicolas Anelka has been ordered to return home, the French Football Federation (FFF) has confirmed.

The Chelsea frontman had been in doubt for the remainder of the World Cup following reports of a verbal attack on coach Raymond Domenech during half-time of Thursday's 2-0 defeat to Mexico.

Anelka missed France's training session this afternoon, which intensified rumours that he could be ditched just three days before Les Bleus' final group match.

FFF vice-president Christian Teinturier had claimed that Anelka would be expelled from the squad if the reports were true, and the French football body has now confirmed the decision.

"The comments made by Nicolas Anelka against the national coach Raymond Domenech are totally unacceptable to the FFF, the French football and the values they uphold," an FFF statement read.
"Informed late on Friday evening of the serious incident during half-time of the match between France and Mexico, the federation's president, Jean-Pierre Escalettes, asked Nicolas Anelka, in the presence of captain Patrice Evra, to officially apologize to the French people and to rue his remarks before Raymond Domenech, the staff and 23 players of the French national team.

"Upon the player's refusal to issue a public apology, Escalettes made the decision, in full agreement with the coach and members of the French delegation in Knysna, to exclude Nicolas Anelka from the group.

"The player will leave France's camp this evening."

France are sitting third in Group A on just one point, with Les Bleus taking on South Africa in their last World Cup group match.

How will the tournament go? Check out Castrol Football's 2010 FIFA World Cup Tournament Predictor.

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