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French press review 11 August 2010


Many French newspapers led with football this morning, and the ongoing saga with the French national squad. As Le Parisien recounts, France play Norway in a friendly tonight - and it’s the first match since the fiasco of the World Cup.

The report calls Laurent Blanc's new players "a new generation" with a discussion of the the last 50 days that they say has "changed the football tricolour".

The first two pages are dedicated to this, including quotes from the new boss, who during preparations in Oslo, told reporters, "we come to win".

Staying on the same theme the daily sports newspaper L'Equipe leads with the headline, "a breath of fresh air". Maybe slightly pre-emptive.

Alongside pictures of French footballers, we see a photo of Camille Lacourt, one of the medalists from Budapest, where the French won five medals in the European swimming championships yesterday.

They compare and contrast French success and failure, saying that tonight, the nation "waits with pleasure"! We'll see.

Communist l'Humanité returns to milk and the fight over what farmers see as adequate compensation for their cow juice.

The frontpage reads, “the injustice of milk pricing”. Milk producers will today take action to try and obtain what they see as the correct renumeration for their work.

Left-wing Liberation and La Croix both must be getting short of news this summer. They include reports on cyber-crime.

The Catholic newspaper focuses on the mobilisation of states against the threat of cyber criminals. Meanwhile Liberation teaches us all about hackers and the effect they have on businesses.

Le Figaro leads with GDF Suez and their purchase of British electricity group International Power.

The government-friendly newspaper says "France - the world leader in electricity production".

GDF Suez now becomes the second largest electricity producer in the world. In their editorial Le Figaro tells us it's, “France that wins”.

They also note that this comes two years after EDF - France's other electricity giant, and one of the biggest utility companies in the world - bought British Energy.

The newspaper's editorial piece considers France's other supercorporations: Total, Areva, France Telecom and Alstrom.

It concludes that the involvement of the state in these organisations is "not necessarily bad to performance".

Right-wing Le Fig ends by saying, “France must reform its system of taxation, encourage research and modernise social dialogue,” something they say they've known for a long time.

I'm sure they have. France instead seems to be very adept at creating as many quasi-state utility companies as possible.

Le Monde’s headline this morning reads, "regions: against the crisis, the major projects". Accompanying this story is a lovely picture of workmen getting busy on the new LGV (ligne à grande vitesse) trainline in France.

Le Monde says these major projects have not yet had the brakes slammed on, although they have been detrimental to other works nearby.

Inside they detail projects across France, including new train lines, urban regeneration and a new airport.

In 2009 local authorities spent more than 44 billion euros on equipment and construction, that's up 3.4 billion euros from 2008, according to the article.

On a lighter note in today's cartoon Le Monde depicts a rather green looking Russian Prime Minister Vladmir Putin.

Their captions read, "Russian smoke, Smoky discourse" as Putin clutches onto a puppet, his President Dmitry Medvedev, who seems to be nervously crying, "we have the situation in hand".

This of course refers to the wild fires in Russia and Mr Putin's action-man style mastery of the situation.

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