French football has never been short of controversies or breaking news. The Benzema-Valbuena incident instantly comes to mind.
More recently, the Pogba extortion episode created headlines.
Another issue came up on Monday before the French team was getting ready for the Nations League games.
A dispute over the use of Kylian Mbappé‘s image rights arose again between him and the French Football Federation (FFF.)
The player refused to participate in a photoshoot involving betting companies and fast food restaurant chains.
After the Pogba extortion incident, Mbappe’s refusal to participate is yet another source of contention for the France squad as they prepare to defend the World Cup.
Mbappe has been adamant about his position on image rights and reportedly said there are some companies he does not want to endorse.
He did not pose for photos with his teammates on Tuesday because the federation has not revised the agreement for the French team before the World Cup, according to national media citing a statement made by Mbappe to the country’s official news agency.
According to the provisions of the current agreement, which was negotiated with the France national team back in 2010, the players are required to engage in marketing activities with the team’s sponsors.
Players are paid 25,000 Euros for each international game in which they compete.
Mbappe, according to ESPN, seeks a say in which brands are affiliated with French players while they’re on international duty.
He does not wish to advertise certain of the national team’s sponsors, such as fast-food restaurants and gambling companies.
Back in April, Mbappe wrote a heated tweet about an online betting company that had made fun of his father, which could be one of the reasons why he took such a bold stance.
Since Mbappe is one of the country’s biggest stars, his statement drew a quick reaction from the FFF, which will now seek to make changes.
“The FFF is looking forward to working on the outlines of a new agreement that will enable it to protect its interests while taking into consideration the legitimate concerns and convictions unanimously expressed by the players” the statement read.
This reaction after the incident has been polarising.
On one hand are those that are applauding Mbappe for taking a stance against betting and fast food companies.
On the other hand are those that are calling Mbappe too big-headed.
The argument is that if the other players have no issue, he should not have an issue either.
Additionally, it is being said that Mbappe is hypocritical for calling out betting companies without saying anything about Qatari sports washing.
Going further, Mbappe teamed up with a brand named Sorare just this June, which has been under investigation for being a gambling-based game.
FFF’s hastiness in revising the agreement indicates that Mbappe has indeed won the battle.
Some are pointing out that if the same issue was brought on by another player, it would not have been dealt with similar haste.
Whether these events have any effect on the team’s success or not can only be seen on Thursday, when France face Austria in the Nations League.