Olivier Giroud has shown his support for his former France teammate, Patrice Evra, after the ex-Marseille defender was banned from football until June 2018 for kicking a fan.
Giroud certainly isn’t sitting on the fence following the news that Evra’s received an eight-month ban from all UEFA competitions. The striker is firmly in the former Manchester United defender’s corner.
“I hope that he can bounce back,” the 31-year-old said after scoring against Wales on Friday.
“I’ve written him a message to send my support. We had five great years together with the national team and he has always been a leader. It’s difficult to speak of what he did, but it was instinct, something full of emotion. And I don’t understand very well how supporters can come so close to the pitch like that.
“He’s won numerous titles, he’s a great player. I hope he can rebound, rediscover his happiness and finish in a different manner.”
Before the Europa League match between Evra’s former team Marseille and Vitoria on November 2, the full-back was seen getting involved in a scuffle with a handful of his own fans before he kicked one in the face.
Evra insists that the fan was abusing him. However, his rash actions resulted in UEFA slapping him with an eight-month ban from all competitions and Marseille sacking him, although the official line is that he left via mutual consent.
The 36-year-old’s contract with the Ligue 1 side was set to run out in June 2018 anyway, when his ban comes to an end.
It’ll be interesting to see if Evra continues his career after this incident or whether he’ll just hang up his boots.
He had eight good years at United, where he won the Premier League five times, as well as the Champions League. He also clinched the Serie A title twice with Juventus after he left the Red Devils.
He’s had a good run.
Perhaps it is time to call it a day.