France to investigate plan of coaches to introduce quota to limit African players in youth academies By staff writers FOX SPORTS Quota system ... the France national team has long been a mix of black and white players. The president of the French Football Federation (FFF) Fernand Duchaussoy has denied having any knowledge of a meeting where France coaches discussed quotas restricting African players in their youth training programs. French media outlet Mediapart reported this week that national coach Laurent Blanc and other coaches discussed the quotas at a meeting last November. The FFF's National Technical Board, including Blanc, secretly approved a quota selection process to restrict the number of young African and North-African players in youth training centres to 30 per cent, reducing the number of African candidates for the national team. Mohamed Belkacemi, a district football adviser within the FFF's technical committee, was present at the meeting and has revealed he recorded the conversation and informed FFF officials. Belkacemi said he recorded the meeting because he was stunned at some of the "unspeakable remarks" he was already hearing within the federation. "What I had to say I (already) said eye-to-eye to the people concerned ... I've been working for 20 years with kids in the inner-cities," Belkacemi told Infosport. The Clairefontaine training camp, one of the centres made aware of the quota system, once coached France stars Thierry Henry, Nicolas Anelka, Louis Saha and William Gallas, all of whom are of African decent. The FFF have denied any knowledge of the discussion and has promised an investigation. The scandal has re-opened the racism debate in French football, with Christophe Dugarry taking a pot shot at his former teammate Lilian Thuram. Dugarry, Thuram and Blanc played alongside each other France's victorious 1998 World Cup campaign, but Dugarry felt compelled to speak out after Thuram criticised Blanc's role in the quota affair. "What annoys me about Lilian Thuram's behaviour, especially when I see him go up against Laurent Blanc in such a manner, is the way he wants to pass himself off as the judge of the Supreme Court," Dugarry told Infosport. Dugarry also related a story about the night of France's World Cup celebrations in July 1998. "We have the cup and we're taking photos of each other,'' recalled Dugarry. "And then I hear Lilian Thuram - and I'm not the only one, Franck Leboeuf (heard it) as well - say: 'Come on, let's get a photo with all the blacks.' "And Franck Leboeuf gets up and says to him: 'Lilian, what are you saying now? Imagine if we'd said, 'Come on, let's get a photo with all the whites.' How would you have reacted?' "Those are discriminatory words and at no point did we misinterpret them and at no point could we have imagined that Lilian Thuram was a fascist or a racist."