Hollande twists the knife over France's success

French president told Cameron that Europe would pool its medals so Britain would be happy in the EU

It wasn't that long ago that our rivals in Paris were enjoying the only bit of sporting action they would get to see in the flesh this summer: a Brit bicycling down the Champs Élysées in a yellow jersey. But revenge is evidently an hors d'oeuvre best served froid.

While Team GB are yet to secure their first gold, the French have been cleaning up in the pool, and at the canoe slalom course, with a glut of gold medals that leave them behind only the Chinese and the Americans in the medal table.

Much is now being made of "The Curse of Cameron". The Prime Minister was present and correct for Tom Daley and Peter Waterfield's diving disappointment, as well Mark Cavendish's defeat in the road race. Prior to the Olympics, Mr Cameron watched on as Andy Murray was crushed by Roger Federer in the Wimbledon final.

Now the new French President François Hollande, right with the PM, has got in on the act. He thanked Mr Cameron for "rolling out the red carpet" for French athletes – an undisguised dig at Mr Cameron's red carpet jibe on welcoming French tax exiles to the UK – and told the British not to worry about the poor initial showing, saying that, never mind, Europe would pool its medals so Britain would at last be happy to be in the EU.

Talk about twisting the knife, Mr Hollande announced that France would be likely to bid for the 2024 Games, having learned lessons from London. "The problem is that there are simply too many corporate seats," he said. "We don't talk of money, we talk of gold."

But, fear not, there are reasons to be cheerful. Un, deux, trois, and indeed, quatre. The Prime Minister will not be attending any Olympic events over the next couple of days. Relief, then, for the likes of cyclist Lizzie Armitstead in the women's individual time trial and weightlifter Jack Oliver. The man of the hour, Bradley Wiggins will also be in action today. The rowing finals begin this morning, with serious gold medal hopes for Britain in the men's eight and the women's pair. The latter set an Olympic record in qualifying. And the medals are soon to be dished out at the sailing in Dorset, another British bastion.

And tomorrow, Team GB's Pringle-shaped house of gold, the Velodrome, finally opens for business. A nation hopes that, in the ever so slightly amended words of the non-official Olympics wheat-based snack provider, once you pop, you can't stop. Not that the French would ever eat such a thing, of course.

News
peopleFrankie Boyle responds to referendum result in characteristically offensive style
News
news
Life and Style
Couples have been having sex less in 2014, according to a new survey
life
New Articles
i100... with this review
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Voices
Holly's review of Peterborough's Pizza Express quickly went viral on social media
Sport
footballTim Sherwood: This might be th match to wake up Manchester City
Arts and Entertainment
musicHow female vocalists are now writing their own hits
New Articles
i100
News
news
Arts and Entertainment
musicBiographer Hunter Davies has collected nearly a hundred original manuscripts
News
Blahnik says: 'I think I understand the English more than they do themselves'
people
Arts and Entertainment
Michelle Dockery as Lady Mary Crawley in Downton Abbey
TVInside Downton Abbey series 5
Life and Style
The term 'normcore' was given the oxygen of publicity by New York magazine during the autumn/winter shows in Paris in February
fashionWhen is a trend a non-trend? When it's Normcore, since you ask
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Marketing Manager - Leicestershire - £35,000

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager (CIM, B2B, MS Offi...

Marketing Executive (B2B and B2C) - Rugby, Warwickshire

£22000 - £25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly successful organisation wit...

SEN Coordinator + Teacher (SENCO)

£1 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Job Purpose To work closely with the he...

Research Manager - Quantitative/Qualitative

£32000 - £42000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is curr...

Day In a Page

Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam