France coach Didier Deschamps says he will never forget Karim Benzema claiming that he was ‘bowing to racists’ after snubbing the striker for the 2016 European Championship squad.
Benzema has not featured for the French national side since the investigation over an alledged attempt to blackmail teammate Mathieu Valbuena over a sex-tape in 2015.
The French striker was then left out of the squad for the European Championships a year later, with Benzema claiming Deschamps 'has bowed to the pressure of a racist part of France'.
The 2018 World Cup-winning coach admits he will never forget how those comments affected his life and family.
"It's a stain," Deschamps said in an interview with RTL.
"Even if with time it calms down a bit, I can't forget. It's not just about Karim Benzema. There are statements by other people too that have led to this violent act, which affects my family.
"When it concerns me, on my choices as coach, the tactics, the technical aspect, it has to be accepted and it does not matter.
“There, it crosses the white line. It touches my name, my family. For me, this is unacceptable.
“Saying certain things necessarily leads to verbal or physical aggression. I suffer the consequences. We cannot forget. I cannot forget. I will never forget."
See below European footballers, including Benzema, who have African blood: