France's FIFA World Cup-winning defender Laurent Blanc has been officially named as national team coach. The 44-year-old, who cut his teeth for the job in coaching Bordeaux to the 2009 league title, replaces Raymond Domenech, who stepped down after France's catastrophic FIFA World Cup™ campaign, although he had already said he would not stay on in the post.
"It is the good news of the morning," announced outgoing French Football Federation (FFF) president Jean-Pierre Escalettes. "The France team will continue under the leadership of Laurent Blanc, who will have an extremely pugnacious sporting project with the will to 'win' and in order to put the French team back on the rails in both a sporting and a moral point of view.
It is imperative to take account of the mistakes of the past and ensure these do not repeat themselves.
"It is imperative to take account of the mistakes of the past and ensure these do not repeat themselves," added Escalettes. Blanc, who played for Manchester United, Marseille and Inter Milan, will be assisted by his number two at Bordeaux Jean-Louis Gasset.
Blanc was capped 97 times but missed the 1998 FIFA World Cup final victory over Brazil because he was suspended. He also won the 2009 League Cup with Bordeaux and guided the French giants to two UEFA Champions League campaigns.