Credit Agricole, Quick drop French football team

The Eurozone is in crisis, not because of dodgy finances but because of the lamentable performances of its so-called ‘big’ football teams.

La belle France is leading the way after the extraordinary row following sulky striker Nicolas Anelka’s half-time description of coach Raymond Domenech as “a son of a whore.”

So French advertisers and sponsors are running for the exit rather faster than captain Thierry Henry can manage these days with giant bank Credit Agricole and restauration rapide operator Quick (which had the foresight to sign Anelka for its World Cup campaign) leading the way.

Both have canned their campaigns as France prepares to exit the tournament whatever its result in the forthcoming match against hosts South Africa (who look as though they’re on the way out too).

Is there not a clause in the contracts these advertisers sign with stars to insist on a certain standard of behaviour? Maybe Quick will sue Anelka.

Other big Euro teams including England, Italy (draws in their first two games) and Germany (undone by a barmy Spanish referee against Serbia) are also struggling, leaving advertisers across the continent wondering if they shouldn’t have done something more sensible with their money, like lending it to Greece.

But Les Francais have taken the croissant so far.

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About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.