French Football Federation: Wikis


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French Football Federation
Association crest
Founded 7 April 1919
FIFA affiliation 1907
UEFA affiliation 1954
President Jean-Pierre Escalettes (2005–)

The French Football Federation (FFF) (French: Fédération Française de Football) is the governing body of association football in France, as well as the overseas departments and territories (Guadeloupe, French Guyana, Martinique, Mayotte, New Caledonia, French Polynesia, and Réunion). It was formed in 1919 and is based in the capital Paris. The FFF was a founding member of FIFA and is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the game of football in France, both professional and amateur. Its current president is Jean-Pierre Escalettes, who was elected to his position in 2005.

The FFF sanctions all competitive football matches in France, either directly, beginning with the Championnat National on down, or indirectly through the Ligue de Football Professionnel, who manage Ligue 1 and Ligue 2, the first and second divisions of France, respectively, as well as the Coupe de la Ligue. The LFP, however, still operate under the authority of the federation. It is also responsible for appointing the management of the men's, women's and youth national football teams. In 2006, the FFF had 2,143,688 club licenses, with over 1,850,836 registered players.[1] The federation unveiled its new crest (above right) in 2007.



The Fédération Française de Football was formed on 7 April 1919 following the transformation of the Comité Français Interfédéral (CFI) into the Fédération Française de Football Association (FFFA). The CFI were seen as a rival organization to the Union des Sociétés Françaises de Sports Athlétiques (USFSA) due to the organization's constantly disagreeing with each other, mainly due to the latter's opposition of professionalism in sport. Following the debacle at the 1908 Summer Olympics, in which France sent two teams, one controlled by the USFSA and another by FIFA, the CFI ruled that FIFA would now be responsible for the club's appearances in forthcoming Olympic Games and not the USFSA. Being a founding member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the USFSA disagreed with the ruling and, despite having three years to reach an agreement, the CFI and the USFSA failed to, which led to France not sending a football team to the 1912 Summer Olympics. The USFSA later developed friction with FIFA and the IOC, which led to disorganization and in 1913, became semi-affiliated with the CFI.

On 7 April 1919, the CFI transformed themselves into the Fédération Française de Football with Jules Rimet being installed as the federation's first president. Its legal status is placed under the French Association loi de 1901 jurisdiction (Voluntary association). The FFF has been affiliated to FIFA since 1907, when the CFI succeeded the USFSA as France's representative. Two years later after the CFI's transformation, the USFSA officially merged with the federation.

The French Football Federation describes itself in four roles:

  • To create and maintain a link between its individual members, affiliated clubs, and their respective districts and regional leagues of the Ligue du Football Amateur (LFA) and the Ligue de Football Professionnel (LFP).
  • To maintain all appropriate relations with foreign associations affiliated with FIFA, as well as their sporting organizations and national governments.


The French Football Federation runs numerous competitions, the most famous of which is the annual Coupe de France. The Coupe de France is managed under the authority of the Federal Commission of the Coupe de France, which is directly attached to the Federal Council of the FFF. The federation also organizes the championships of the semi-professional and amateur leagues, such as the Championnat National, the Championnat de France amateur and Championnat de France amateur 2, and the regional and departmental leagues, as well as the latter's cup competitions.

The federation also governs youth leagues, such as the Championnat National of the under-19s and under-17s. The FFF also oversee the organization of the Coupe Gambardella and the Coupe Nationale for the under-15 and under-13 club teams. The federation organizes all three divisions of women's football in France and oversee the Challenge de France, the women's premier cup competition.

Federal Council

There are 21 member of the Federal Council of the French Football Federation.

Member Role Notes
Jean-Pierre Escalettes President Appointed to role in 2005.
Noël Le Graët Vice-President
Gervais Martel Vice-President Serves as chairman of Ligue 1 club RC Lens.
Jacques Rousselot Vice-President Serves as chairman of Ligue 1 club AS Nancy.
Fernand Duchaussoy Vice-President Also serves as President of the Ligue du Football Amateur (LFA).
Christian Teinturier Vice-President
Jacques Léger Vice-President Also serves as President of the Ligue de Bourgogne.
Marc Riolacci Vice-President Also serves as President of the Ligue du Corse.
Frédéric Thiriez Assistant to the Vice-Presidents
Bernard Désumer Treasurer
Henri Monteil General secretary
Guy Chambily Chairman of Supervisory committee
Bernard Saules Referee represetative Serves as President of the National Union of Referees
René Charrier UNFP representative
Lilian Thuram Sportifs d'Elite representative
Marilou Duringer-Erckert Professional women's players representative
Pierre Rochcongar Doctor
François Ponthieu Member
Jean-Marc Puissesseau Member
Jacques Thébault Member
Jean-Marie Lawniczak Member


The French Football Federation operates 12 élite academies throughout the country of France, the most famous being Le Centre Technique National Fernand Sastre, or simply Clairefontaine, which was created by former FFF president Fernand Sastre in 1976. Located 50 km southwest of Paris in Clairefontaine-en-Yvelines, Clairefontaine is arguably the finest football academy in the world. It has a high reputation of producing some of the most gifted French players including Nicolas Anelka, Louis Saha, William Gallas and national team top scorer Thierry Henry.

Academy Location Notes
CREPS de Aquitaine Talence Trains players exclusively brought up in Aquitaine.
Centre de Préformation de Football Liévin Trains players exclusively brought up in Nord-Pas-de-Calais.
Pôle Espoir de Castelmaurou Castelmaurou Trains players exclusively brought up in the Midi-Pyrénées.
Clairefontaine Clairefontaine-en-Yvelines Trains players exclusively brought up in Île-de-France.
IFR Châteauroux Châteauroux Trains players exclusively brought up in Centre.
Pôle Espoir de Dijon Dijon Trains players exclusively brought up in Bourgogne.
Pôle Espoir de Marseille Marseille Trains players exclusively brought up in and around Méditerranée.
PEF Ploufragan Ploufragan Trains players exclusively brought up in Brittany.
CREPS de Reims Reims Trains players exclusively brought up in Champagne-Ardenne.
CREPS La Réunion Réunion Trains players exclusively brought up in Réunion and nearby territories.
PEF Saint-Sébastien-sur-Loire Saint-Sébastien-sur-Loire Trains players exclusively brought up in Pays de la Loire.
Pôle Espoir de Vichy Vichy Trains players exclusively brought up in Auvergne.


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