World Cup 2006 Runners-up France have bowed out in South Africa after a 2-1 loss to the hosts at the Free State Stadium.
After a poor group stage showing, which produced just one goal for the French national side, the boys in Blue must travel home to a country which will not be welcoming them back with open arms.
It must be said that the French never looked likely to perform well this summer. After scraping through the qualifying stages and 'cheating' their way past the Republic of Ireland, the off-field scuffles, during the World Cup, managed to affect the French performances on a massive scale.
Florent Malouda was dropped for the first game against Uruguay after apparently being 'held back' from French coach Domenech during a team meeting. The French never looked dangerous against the South American side, and ended up lucky to finish with a 0-0 stalemate.
Malouda was back in for the next game against Mexico but the French side looked like a team with no confidence in their manager. They went down 2-0 and looked unlikely, from that stage, to qualify for the second round.
More drama was to come before their final game when Nicolas Anelka was sent home by the France National Team for 'abusive language' aimed at Domenech, the man central to this catastrophe. This led to a strike from the players who refused to train just days before the clash with South Africa. French Captain, Patrice Evra, was also filmed ranting at a French Coach. He was subsequently dropped and lost his captaincy for the final group game.
It is awful to see such talented players fall well below thier potentials however, in Mexico and Uruguay, we have two teams brimming full of quality, progressing to the second round. Also, with England's game against Slovenia tomorrow afternoon, it is time for the country to bring out the flags once more and cheer our boys to victory and a place in the knock-out stages...