Merde! Cantona's run for president of France is publicity stunt
Published 10:55 10/01/12 By MirrorFootball
Nicolas Sarkozy can sleep easy in his child-sized bed - Manchester United legend Eric Cantona is not running for the French presidency after all.
The moody striker, who has been in acting since his retirement, told Paris newspaper Liberation he was taking the first step to challenge Nicolas Sarkozy by collecting the signatures of 500 elected officials to gain their support.
But this morning the amazing news was revealed to be merely a publicity stunt on behalf of housing charities.
Cantona WAS canvassing signatures, but only to support a petition asking for more funds to solve the nation's homeless crisis.
Liberation deputy editor Paul Quinio said: "He isn't looking for signatures to be a candidate for the presidency, but to pass on the message of the Abbé Pierre foundation in support of better housing policy, and to make housing, which is a priority for French people, a priority for the presidential candidates."
He added that Cantona would be going on a presidential-style series of rallies throughout France to raise awareness of the issue.
In his letter to Liberation, Cantona described himself as an "engaged citizen" and told Liberation: "This engagement obliges me to speak, more earnestly than usual, but also with a keen sense of my responsibility, at a time when our country faces difficult choices which will be decisive for its future.”
He added that he was concerned about a lack of jobs for young people and about social injustices, which he described as "too numerous, too violent, too systematic”.