Rugby World Cup 2011
Nallet dismisses talk of French uprising
September 27, 2011
France lock Lionel Nallet has dismissed speculation that Marc Lievremont has a mutiny on his hands © Getty Images
Lionel Nallet has rubbished rumours of unrest with the French camp as "nonsense", insisting that the squad remains as united as ever behind under-fire coach Marc Lievremont.
Les Bleus boss Lievremont was heavily criticised for his team selection for Saturday's defeat by the All Blacks and on Monday he went on the offensive, criticising the French media for creating a "detestable atmosphere" during his press briefings.
There have also been reports that a number of players are rebelling against the coach's tactics but Nallet, speaking after Tuesday's team announcement for this weekend's clash with Tonga, insists that the rumours are without foundation.
"I have been hearing stories, rumours about little uprisings by the players and a lot of nonsense like that," the former France captain said. "At the moment there is a very good atmosphere in our squad and we are all united with each other.
"Yesterday we had a debriefing after the match (against New Zealand) with the coaches and it went off very well."
The reports of a mutiny are nothing new, as it was claimed before the tournament even began that an unnamed French player had told a reporter that 25 of France's 30-strong squad were unhappy with the coach.
"That makes me laugh," Nallet said. "If we were 25 against Marc Lievremont, we would all have been aware of that by now."
Nallet also downplayed the significance of Louis Picamoles and Damien Traille both publicly expressing their disappointment at being dropped for Saturday's meeting with Tonga.
"The players have every right to express their feelings," he said. "Louis and Damien both came to speak to me after what they said was reported in the press, but as I don't read the press anymore I told them that they had no need to worry."
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