The president of the French Football Federation (FFF), Noël Le Graët, believes that the announcement of the list of 26 Blues for Euro-2020 should not have been accompanied by a song that has become controversial by rapper Youssoupha, in an interview published in “le Parisien” this Thursday, May 27.
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“I believe that we should not have done this and let the list be disclosed as usual, without communication”, indicated Noël Le Graët about the song that accompanied the presentation clip of the list of coach Didier Deschamps, on May 19. “It was our young employees in the sales department who had this idea to accompany the unveiling of the list of 26 Blues”, explains the manager, aged 79.
“Write my name in blue, call out my name in blue, write it down. Write my name in blue… ”, chanted on this track Youssoupha, 41, one of the figures of French rap since a first solo album in 2007. “Personally, I discovered it. Some like rap, others less, said the boss of the FFF. Youssoupha is a good rapper who, like others, may have had inappropriate lyrics. “
The controversy was launched by the number two of the National Rally, Jordan Bardella, who had estimated a week ago that choosing the rapper for the anthem of the Blues at the Euro was “Give in to a scum part of France”. He had notably denounced the choice of an artist who had comments “Extremely virulent” against Marine Le Pen. It evokes lyrics from the title “Eternal recommencement”, released in 2006, “When he says, “in this dream where my nigger seed blows up this Marine Le Pen bitch” “.
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But other words against the far right even landed the rapper in court. In 2009, polemicist Eric Zemmour sued Youssoupha for insults and defamation. In a song from his album “On the return paths”, “By force de le dire”, the artist called for “Silence this con of Eric Zemmour”. But the rapper had won before the Paris Court of Appeal, who considers that these words did not exceed “Not the permissible limits in terms of freedom of artistic expression”.
Like the Minister of Sports Roxana Maracineanu, the Minister of Culture Roselyne Bachelot brought her support to the singer on Europe 1 on Tuesday: “It’s a hymn to the Blues and Youssoupha’s hymn doesn’t bother me at all. “
For Christmas Le Graet, “This song didn’t deserve as many comments, it’s politics”. However, the boss of the FFF ensures that Youssoupha’s song “Is not the anthem of the Blues”. He “Does not appear on the Federation’s website and we do not intend to ask people to repeat these words”.