Ribery could be punished – Platini

The Uefa president says the winger should jump at the chance to play in the European Championships in his own country and says he could be punished if he refuses a call-up

Michel Platini says he does not understand Franck Ribery’s decision to retire from international football and said he could be punished if he refuses to play.

The Bayern Munich winger was a late withdrawal from the France squad which played in the World Cup earlier this year because of an injury and he subsequently announced his retirement from the national team. The Frenchman’s Bayern team-mate Philipp Lahm has also decided to end his involvement with his national team after winning the World Cup with Germany.

And Platini says he is confused by the players’ decisions, insisting Ribery could be punished if he refused a call up by coach Didier Deschamps. 

“I have zero understanding of this,” the Uefa president told Bild. “It is not the decision of the players, whether they come to the national team. This is the decision of the coach. 

“If there is disagreement between Lahm and Low, the Germany coach will no longer call on him, that’s one thing. But basically it is not Lahm’s decision, it’s Low’s.

“[With Ribery] it’s a very different situation. Franck Ribery cannot simply decide whether he plays for France or not. If coach Didier Deschamps invites him, he must come to the national team.

“This is defined in the Fifa statutes. If he does not come, he is suspended for three games with Bayern Munich. I don’t understand him anyway. He is French, the European Championship in 2016 will take place in France!”