French Top 14 rugby club Stade Francais has taken swift disciplinary action against players and coaches following reports of a physical altercation involving a member of Pau’s coaching staff.
The incident reportedly occurred in a southern town near the Pyrenees after Pau secured a league win over Stade Francais last weekend.
According to reputable sources such as L’Equipe, the altercation unfolded when a player from Stade Francais clashed with a coach from Pau in the aftermath of the match.
Stade Francais, currently holding the third position in the Top 14 table, disclosed that certain players and two members of their coaching staff had violated team orders by leaving the team hotel before the incident took place.
In an official statement, the 14-time French champions acknowledged the altercation and confirmed their commitment to addressing the issue internally.
The club stated, “After an internal investigation, the club has decided to discipline those at fault by applying adequate disciplinary measures that have been defined by the team’s internal rules.”
Stade Francais, under the leadership of Laurent Labit, who previously coached France’s backs in the Rugby World Cup, faces a crucial match against Toulouse on Sunday.
Despite the off-field controversy, the team remains focused on their on-field performance as they host the 22-time French champions.
Owned by German-born Swiss billionaire Hans-Peter Wild, Stade Francais boasts the Top 14’s second-highest playing budget at 45.3 million euros ($49.4 million) for the current season.
The disciplinary measures underscore the club’s commitment to upholding professionalism and maintaining a positive image in the competitive world of rugby. As they navigate through the consequences of this incident, Stade Francais aims to refocus on their upcoming challenges in the Top 14 league.