On this day in 2010: Nicolas Anelka receives 18-match ban

Nicolas Anelka’s international career was effectively ended after he was given an 18-match suspension by the French Football Federation for his World Cup altercation with coach Raymond Domenech.

The striker, with Chelsea at the time, was disciplined for his part in the internal strife which contributed to Les Bleus’ early exit from the World Cup in South Africa.

Their campaign descended into farce after the squad went on strike when Anelka was sent home from South Africa after a row with Domenech.

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France finished bottom of their group, after scoring just one goal and earning one point in three matches, and the fall-out led to new coach Laurent Blanc suspending all 23 members of the World Cup squad from his selection for a friendly against Norway, while the FFF also withheld bonuses owed to the players.

Patrice Evra was handed a five-match ban, Franck Ribery a three-match suspension and Jeremy Toulalan a one-game ban for their parts in the revolt.

However, Eric Abidal and the remaining members of the 23-man squad escaped further punishment, having already missed the first match of Blanc’s reign as coach.