Sportspersons should have exemplary behaviour: French PM

Paris, March 28 (IANS) French Prime Minster Manuel Valls has renewed the controversy over Real Madrid forward Karim Benzema, by insisting that a sportsperson should be “exemplary” in his behaviour.

Valls said that politicians and athletes now have more responsibilities, and insisted that both should represent role models for people, reports Efe.

Benzema is facing charges in France of being involved in a plot to blackmail his countryman and team-mate Mathieu with a sex tape featuring Valbuena and his wife.

On December 1, 2016, Valls said if an athlete is not “exemplary”, then he has “no place within the France team” — a reference to Benzema.

The French player responded on Twitter saying: “12 seasons as a professional: 541 games played, 0 red cards, 11 yellows!!! And some talk about my exemplariness???”

The French Football Federation will issue its ruling next April regarding whether or not to call up Benzema for the Euro 2016.

On the other hand, Valls said that despite the current terror threat, Euro 2016 will be held in France as scheduled between next June 10 and July 10, but amid tight security in stadiums and in designated areas for fans where games will be broadcast.

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