Speaking to RMC Sport, Montpellier HSC president Laurent Nicollin has revealed that his manager, Michel Der Zakarian, has had a phone call with Thierry Henry, whom he had criticised earlier this week. The MHSC manager did not take well to the France U21 manager’s comments about the lack of “action” in Ligue 1 in recent gameweeks.
“It isn’t even necessarily the lack of goals [that are making Ligue 1 boring currently. There is no action, no shots on target,” said the Bleuets manager last week. In the gameweek that preceded the current international break, only 12 goals were scored in eight games, and the week before that just 13.
However, Der Zakarian believes that Henry should not have made such harmful comments about France’s top-flight, given his position as an employee of the FFF. “The guy works for the FFF and criticises French football. It’s nonsense! It’s easy to criticise the league when you’re the manager of the France U21 team. He won 4-0 twice but against whom? He hasn’t beaten anyone. If he wins 5-0 against Spain or Italy, I’ll say well done,” said the Montpellier manager.
However, Der Zakarian’s criticism then took a personal turn as he went on to question Henr’y managerial credentials. “I don’t agree with Thierry Henry. Where has he managed? What did he do at AS Monaco? He had three months and then he cleared off,” he said. Henry replied following France U21’s defeat against South Korea, stating that he “didn’t attack anyone.”
Nicollin has now told RMC Sport that the pair held a phone call on Tuesday morning in order to ease the tensions. “I am not going to comment on what each one of them said, but I am of the opinion that when you manage a French national team, you need to try and value the French championship […] I think they had a phone call today (Tuesday). Everything is sorted. There isn’t a story. There is no problem,” said Montpellier’s president.
GFFN | Luke Entwistle