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Le Graet plays down Nasri gesture

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 13 Jun 2012

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French Football Federation President Noel Le Graet has defending Samir Nasri’s celebration after scoring against England on Monday.

Nasri netted the equaliser in France’s 1-1 draw with England in Group D of Euro 2012, and put a finger to his lips.

He could be seen on television cameras mouthing the words ‘shut your face,’ reportedly in reaction to criticism from the French press during the build-up to the tournament in Poland and Ukraine.

“I had the impression it was blown out of proportion,” Le Graet said.

“Personally, I think he had a very good game and you sport journalists all agreed. He was even named Man of the Match by UEFA.

“He unlocked a difficult situation. Maybe he had some resentment after a few of your articles. It shows that he reads them and that he is a sensitive person. His reaction, in a moment of joy, was maybe not the right one but it doesn’t really matter and now the headlines will focus on something else.

“Yesterday, I congratulated him. I was very happy because I know he wanted to do well, like all the others. But he had something on his mind, after a few discussions or meetings he had. I’ve congratulated him and now we should move on.”

Next up for France is a match against tournament co-hosts Ukraine in Donetsk on Friday.

Ukraine defeated Sweden 2-1 in their opener on Monday.

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