France's national soccer team top goalie slammed Israel on Thursday, saying he refused to travel with his teammates to a planned match with Israel’s national team next week because of the the Israeli army's actions against Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza.
“When I see all the suffering in the world, I don’t understand why they would want to play in Israel,” Fabien Barthez told a news conference in Paris.
The French goalie also slammed Israel’s operations in the Palestinian territories, saying: “I don’t like it at all. I am speaking as a father and not as a soccer player.”
Should Barthez not arrive in Israel with the rest of the French squad for the planned match on Wednesday, Coach Raymond Domenech would need to use his second-string goalie.