French football chief admits Euro 2016 concerns after Paris attacks

Safety at Euro 2016 is a growing concern after Paris attacks, admits FFF president Noel Le Graet.

FFF president Noel Le Graet.
FFF president Noel Le Graet.

FRENCH FOOTBALL FEDERATION (FFF) president Noel Le Graet has admitted he is “even more worried” about safety at Euro 2016 following Friday’s attacks in Paris.

Latest figures from French officials report 128 people were killed and another 99 remain critical after what appeared to be co-ordinated terror acts in the French capital, including several fatalities outside the Stade de France.

A blast was heard during France’s 2-0 friendly victory over Germany, with fans and players kept inside the stadium long after the game had finished.

Friday’s events come just 10 months after the terror attacks on the Paris offices of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, which left 12 dead. And Le Graet has expressed his concerns for safety around Euro 2016, which is just seven months away.

“A lot of precautions were taken, but we can see that terrorists can strike at any moment. We were already worried about the Euros; now we worry even more. But now, my thoughts are with the families,” Le Graet said.

Several weeks ago, Jacques Lambert – chairman of Euro 2016 SAS, a joint venture between the FFF and UEFA that is responsible for all operational aspects of the tournament — outlined his fears about the possibility of Euro 2016 being targeted.

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Lambert said: “From the start, we knew security would be key to the competition’s success. The attacks of January didn’t change much. The risk of attacks against France, and I say France not just Euro 2016, was identified from the start and was among the 12 risks in the application dossier and structured the work between the ministry of the interior, the government and Euro 2016 SAS.

“What has really changed is the progression of the terrorist risk in comparison to the other risks. It’s not a theoretical risk anymore, it’s a possible risk. There has been an action.”

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