Laporte queries Saint-Andre's double standards
July 7, 2014
Bernard Laporte has experienced huge success at Toulon © Getty Images
Toulon boss Bernard Laporte has queried Philippe Saint-Andre's criticism of the number of foreigners in the Top 14 and pointed to his time in charge of Toulon when he brought all manner of Galacticos to the club.
Saint-Andre has been critical of the number of foreigners in the Top 14 and subscribes to the view that is one reason why the French national side is currently under-performing. But Laporte is tired of excuses and argues mass change should have happened in the French national side in the aftermath of the 2011 World Cup.
"When Philippe Saint-André was at Toulon, he recruited a dozen strangers," Laporte told Midi Olympique. "And at that moment, he did not care for the France team! Now when he says that foreigners are why France are losing, I say stop. Where are we going?
"I've always said the France team must be the priority. Reading our current results makes me scream ... we have become the Spain of rugby! There is something that concerns me. In 2011, at the end of a disastrous World Cup, the English were in the same position as us, but they were able to ask the right questions. Suddenly, their national team is playing well. They are not the best nation in the world, but it is consistent progress when we have not advanced one meter."
For Laporte he argues France must look beyond the four-year World Cup cycle and instead focus on season-by-season consistent success. That is something he is aiming to do at Toulon and one of his immediate tasks will be to find someone to fill the sizeable boots of the now retired Jonny Wilkinson.
Frederic Michalak filled in at fly-half through last season and although they have recruited James O'Connor, who is equally adept at fullback and No.10, Laporte is unwilling to pick out a first-choice fly-half.
"There will be no number one. Frédéric Michalak will compete with Matt Giteau and James O'Connor, who could possibly help. Initially, there is no incumbent. The number one will be decided at the end during the big games."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Communication error please reload the page.
Rory McIlroy's 2015 US debut ended quickly at the Honda Classic, where he was projected to miss the cut on Friday after shooting rounds of 73-74 at PGA National
The Blues have made their worst start to a Super Rugby season after conceding a controversial late penalty to lose 25-24 to the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein
Victoria Azarenka reached the final of the Qatar Open on Friday after recovering from one set down to beat Venus Williams
Champions Northampton moved 13 points clear at the top of the Aviva Premiership with a victory which surely ends Harlequins' hopes of reaching the top four
Ulster made it four Guinness PRO12 wins in succession to move level with Glasgow at the top of the table, downing Scarlets 25-20 in a hard-fought match
Kempton Park and which other course have a race named after Desert Orchid?
The controversial tackling technique will be in full swing in Dublin on Sunday, writes Conor O'Shea, and could be a decisive factor for Ireland
An honest England side have been searching for the heir to Jason Robinson for nearly a decade. Step forward Jonathan Joseph, writes Simon Barnes
Piers Morgan has declared himself "hurt" over former Arsenal goalkeeper Bob Wilson's claims that he is not an authentic fan of the club
The ARU must be applauded for its decision to introduce a pitch-side video review to assist match-day doctors with concussion assessments, Greg Growden writes
Nani has revealed Louis van Gaal has not spoken to him during his loan spell at Sporting Lisbon
Martin Murray has revealed he was taken aback by his fight with middleweight destroyer Gennady Golovkin, but only because the Kazakh did not punch as hard as he thought he would
Brendan Rodgers has hit out at the Premier League's television scheduling, saying it gives Manchester City an advantage over his Liverpool side heading into their crucial clash on Sunday
Chelsea have told fans attending the League Cup final against Tottenham on Sunday that they will take the strongest action against any fans involved anti-Semitic chanting against Spurs supporters
The winner of Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao's mega-fight will be rewarded with a new, specially commissioned WBC belt, it has been announced
Charlton are investigating footage that appears to show a couple having sex on the club's pitch
Chris Eubank Jr tells Inside Boxing of his hopes of a rematch with Billy Joe Saunders - and a dream showdown with the formidable Gennady Golovkin
Tottenham's League Cup final preparations are in full swing with the club set to duke it out with Chelsea at Wembley this coming Sunday
Some of the best fighters to ever glove up have plied their trade in the Octagon - now ESPN list the 10 best who have fought under the UFC banner
How often has a team that lost its opening Championship match gone on to take the title outright?