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PSG coach Galtier takes legal action for defamation after racism accusations

Paris Saint-Germain coach Christophe Galtier. Photo: Franck Fife/AFP

Paris Saint-Germain coach Christophe Galtier is taking legal action against former Nice sporting director Julien Fournier and two French journalists for defamation, his lawyer told AFP on Friday after he was accused of making racist and discriminatory remarks about players last season.

The Paris public prosecutor confirmed to AFP that Galtier had lodged a complaint against Fournier as well as journalists Daniel Riolo and Romain Molina.

Galtier has also filed a separate complaint against persons unknown for harassment and death threats, his lawyer said, after receiving threats in the wake of the accusations being made public.

“We hope that the Paris public prosecutor acts with the same speed as the Nice prosecutor did so that Christophe Galtier can be finished with this affair as quickly as possible,” his lawyer Olivier Martin told AFP.

Galtier, 56, has denied making racist and Islamophobic remarks following allegations which surfaced in an email apparently sent by Fournier and which was reported by various French media.

The message, which AFP has not been able to verify, was reportedly sent by Fournier to Dave Brailsford, the former head of British Cycling and now Director of Sport at chemicals giant Ineos, the owners of Nice.

Galtier and Fournier both left Nice last year after working together at the club for one season, with the former being appointed by PSG.

The affair has threatened to overshadow the end of the season for PSG, who are closing in on a record 11th French league title.

Galtier was already under pressure at the Qatar-owned club due to their faltering form in recent months and their elimination from the Champions League in the last 16 by Bayern Munich.

The public prosecutor in Nice last week announced that a preliminary investigation had been opened into possible “racial or religious discrimination”.

Galtier, who led Lille to the Ligue 1 title in 2021, is under contract at PSG until 2024.

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