Manchester City defender Aymeric Laporte, who recently switched his national allegiance from France to Spain, has claimed that France head coach Didier Deschamps did not reply to his texts before he made the big swap at international level.
Aymeric Laporte got his first national call to France’s senior squad back in 2018 for the Fifa World Cup. Unfortunately, the centre back had to withdraw due to an injury and he missed being a part of their World Cup winning side. Laporte had previously represented the Les Blues at U17 and U21 levels.
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Aymeric Laporte’s inability to find a spot in France’s squad since 2018, was what prompted the defender to switch his national allegiance. His application for dual citizenship got approved by the Spanish government this year and he also got selected in Spain’s squad for Euro 2020. Laporte’s move to Spain received a critical response from France boss Didier Deschamps.
The World Cup winning coach revealed that he did not receive any prior warning or notice from Aymeric Laporte regarding the matter. After Laporte’s selection in Spain’s squad, Deschamps opined: “What makes me uncomfortable is what he might say, and that’s a lie. The only message I received from him was in October about a situation regarding an injury. He hasn’t played for us? It could’ve happened, ten seconds would’ve been enough.”
What Aymeric Laporte has said
After almost a month, now that Euro 2020 is midway completed, Aymeric Laporte has presented his side of the story. In an interview that he gave to The Guardian, the Manchester City defender stated that he had informed Dider Deschamps about his decision through text but never received a reply.
On being asked whether the French coach was aware of his move, Aymeric Laporte said: “Six years before. They didn’t call me. While I don’t want to go over this again, I sent a message and didn’t get a reply.”
“I have it here. Maybe he [Deschamps] changed number, got a new phone. Could be. I don’t know, but I replied to the same number he’d called from before.
“I didn’t get a reply then. Anyway, given everything that happened, nor did I think I was important enough to France to have to inform them of anything.
“My importance to them has been more a media issue than anything. I’ve always been very clear that I’m going to be with those that want me, not those that don’t.
“I’m not saying France didn’t want me, but I’m grateful to those that ‘bet’ on me. Spain did and I’m trying to return that faith.”
Why did Laporte join Spain
Aymeric Laporte revealed that he took the big decision after being contacted by Spain’s head coach Luis Enrique himself before he announced their squad for Euro 2020.
“I’d been in contact with Spain for years because they’ve always wanted me. Luis Enrique called. I took the decision,” he said.
“It wasn’t an easy decision at all. My family still lives in France and from very young I played there with the national team. There were family chats, discussions, an exchange of opinions, the same doubts there would be if you had dual nationality I imagine.”
“Everyone has different feelings. I felt comfortable coming with Spain, fully identified.
That’s what made me change everything. Also, my family hasn’t spent eight years in Spain like me.”