Alvaro Arbeloa criticised France coach Didier Deschamps’ decision not to call up former Real Madrid team-mate Karim Benzema following the nation’s Euro 2016 final defeat.
Hosts France went down to Portugal 1-0 in Sunday’s decider, with Eder finding the net in the second half of extra time in Paris.
Forwards Andre-Pierre Gignac and Antoine Griezmann both had chances for France, with the former’s stoppage-time effort coming off the post, but the side were unable to find the net after 120 minutes.
It was only the second time France were kept scoreless in the tournament after playing out a 0-0 draw with Switzerland in the group stages.
Arbeloa believes it could have been a different story had Benzema been given a spot in the 23-man squad, left out by Deschamps due to a sex-tape scandal involving he and international team-mate Mathieu Valbuena.
“That is what happens when you leave the best number nine in the world at home,” tweeted Arbeloa, in reference to Benzema.
However, Arbeloa – who left Santiago Bernabeu at the end of the 2015-16 season – went on to congratulate the Madrid duo of Cristiano Ronaldo and Pepe for Portugal’s triumph.
Es lo que tiene dejarse al mejor 9 del mundo en casa…