Why did David Ginola sue his former France boss Gerard Houllier?
David Ginola is set to sue his former France boss Gerard Houllier following allegedly offensive comments about the player in the former Aston Villa manager’s new book Coaches’ Secrets.
In the book, Houllier outlines an episode that occured during France’s fateful final qualifier against Bulgaria for the 1994 World Cup, when Jean Pierre Papin and Eric Cantona were booed, after Ginola allegedly questioned their place in the team.
“PSG play at the Parc des Princes. PSG’s enemy is Marseille,” Houllier wrote “When he says that Papin and Cantona should not play and that he should play instead… he is a bastard because every time Papin or Cantona touched the ball, they were booed.”
The pair have a notorious acrimonious relationship that dates back to France’s qualifying campaign for the 1994 World Cup and that fateful game against Bulgaria.
Needing only a draw to qualify a and drawing 1-1 with a minute to go, Ginola invoked the permanent ire of Houllier after opting to put a cross into the Bulgaria box, rather than waste precious moments in the opposition corner flag.
Bulgaria subsequently scored, knocking France out of the tournament and leading the the famous rift.
As Houllier resigned from the position, he even took the opportunity to dig further at the former Newcastle United man saying:
“The adventure is over all too soon. With only 30 seconds remaining we were there but we got stabbed in the back and at the worst possible time.
“The referee still had his whistle to his mouth when Ginola won that free-kick near the corner flag, but then he goes and sends in a huge 60-metre cross instead of hanging on to the ball. That allowed Bulgaria to go and hit us on the counter.”