Blanc plays down club talk

France coach Laurent Blanc insists he has no intention of quitting his role after Euro 2012 despite being linked with some of Europe’s top club sides.

France coach Laurent Blanc insists he has no intention of quitting his role after Euro 2012 despite being linked with some of Europe’s top club sides.

Blanc, who took over the France reins from Raymond Domenech after their disappointing 2010 World Cup campaign, has presided over a period of marked improvement and the French will arrive in Poland and Ukraine this summer as many people’s dark horses.

The former Manchester United and Barcelona defender has been the subject of speculation linking him to both Chelsea and Inter Milan, but he insists that his focus in only on Les Bleus.

“It is always gratifying to be appreciated by the big clubs,” Blanc told Le Parisien. “But my goal is the Euros – I am completely absorbed by this competition.

“My intention is to continue with the France team. I have not changed my mind.”

Speculation over Blanc’s future will continue, however, until he puts pen to paper on a new deal with the French Football Federation.

His existing deal expires after the Euros but he is adamant it is the Federation who must make the first move in any fresh negotiations.

“The situation is that I have not been approached. And I’m not the type of guy who will tap at the door,” he said.

Pressed as to what it would take to make him leave the national team, Blanc said: “If an exceptional challenge is proposed to me.

“At that time, I could very well decide to leave. But it is not there.”

Blanc added that he has doubts over his desire to take over at a club side again, following a three-year stint at Bordeaux prior to taking charge of France.

“As this business develops, it’s very hard to stay long in a club,” he said. “To have the idea of building a club over four or five years has never been in my temperament. I do not even know what I’ll do next season...”

Looking ahead to the Euros, Blanc revealed his main aim is to get one win under his belt following the team’s winless performances at Euro 2008 and World Cup 2010, and then take things from there.

“We want to take the first step,” he said. “Few players [in the current squad] experienced the 2006 World Cup. Those who arrived after have not won a single match in [major] competition.

“The Euros are a chance for them because they have the opportunity to start writing something. To recreate something.

“It’s already a great opportunity. It must be seized to renew the link with the fans.”

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