Sponsors swift to distance themselves from France meltdown

Financial services company Credit Agricole and fast-food company Quick have suspended ad campaigns based around the French national football team, and other sponsors have expressed dismay after the turmoil in the team's World Cup camp over the weekend.

Financial services company Credit Agricole and fast-food company Quick have suspended ad campaigns based around the French national football team, and other sponsors have expressed dismay after the turmoil in the team's World Cup camp over the weekend.

Reuters reports that Credit Agricole cancelled a television campaign featuring the team, and Quick stopped using an advertising film featuring Nicolas Anelka, who has been sent home from the World Cup after a row with the team's management.

Utilities company GDF Suez said it would review its sponsorship of the team, which is supposed to run until 2014, after the World Cup.

“We will certainly, once the World Cup is over, discuss the form of this partnership. You must know that for 100 euros given to the Federation, 70 euros go to non-professional soccer,” a spokeswoman for the company said.

Adidas said it was “appalled and saddened” by the rows that have marred the team's campaign, but would retain its sponsorship, which is due to expire this year.

Other sponsors for the French national team, including retailer Carrefour, Toyota Europe, and telco SFR, have not commented on the matter.