PARIS — The French Football Federation says its ethical council will look into Paris Saint-Germain’s recruiting policy after club scouts illegally profiled the ethnic origins of potential young recruits.
The federation says the council will have the right to ask the French league disciplinary commission to step in when its investigation is over.
PSG acknowledged that forms with “illegal content were used between 2013 and 2018.” But it declined responsibility for implementing the policy after Mediapart news website reported on Thursday that PSG’s non-Paris-based scouts listed the ethnic origins of possible recruits.
Mediapart and French TV program “Envoye Special” said a young black player was overlooked by PSG because of his colour. Following an investigation based on the “Football Leaks” documents, Mediapart alleged 17-year-old midfielder Yann Gboho, who plays for France Under-18s, was disregarded by PSG when he was 13, and the club management decided to cover up “those implicated in the scandal.”
Sports Minister Roxana Maracineanu expressed her “dismay” at the revelations while Nathalie Boy de la Tour, the president of the French soccer league, said “such practices are unacceptable.”
Seven years ago, French soccer was rocked by revelations from Mediapart that then-national coach Laurent Blanc and others discussed informal quotas limiting black and Arab youth players’ involvement in the national squad.