A “traitor” somehow leaked this statement to the media, as Evra said, and newspaper L’Equipe reported it on the front page the next day. Nicolas Anelka refused to publicly apologize and was sent home. At practice, Evra accuses team trainer, Duverne, of leaking the story and Duverne has to be restrained by the coach. The team then walks off the field and writes a statement for Domenech to read to the press. In summary, the statement says that they are not going to practice that day in protest of how Nicolas Anelka was treated. They also say that although they regret what happened, they regret even more that it was leaked to the press. After the statement is released, managing director Jean-Louis Valentin publicly resigned, calling the previous events “a scandal for the French people.” (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lJh_6s0B_Ms). Les Bleus then went on to lose their last game 2-1 against South Africa, and directly after the game, Thierry Henry flew back to Paris to have a meeting with President Sarcozy about everything that had happened.
The French media was relentless in their criticism of Les Bleus, and dubbed the scandal “The Ultimate Humiliation” and “Journey to the Depths of Hell,” among other things. After this scandal, multiple sponsors stopped advertisements related to Les Bleus. Credit Agricole stopped their TV ad campaign with the team, fast food restaurant, Quick, stopped using ads showcasing Anelka, as did Pringles.
In conclusion, without the media’s involvement, what happened in South Africa would not have been the scandal that we now know today. The French team did have a lot of problems, but if L’Equipe hadn’t reported what happened in the locker room, Anelka probably wouldn’t have been sent home and the events following probably wouldn’t have happened. The media partially created the scandal, and then they amplified it and heavily criticized everything that happened. This then caused the sponsors to react and withdraw or stop advertising campaigns related to the team and it’s players.