Football. World Cup 2022: Reigning champions France face obscurity [Vidéo] – Football

2022 World Cup (Group D). France v Australia this Tuesday (20:00)

Didier Deschamps repeats this over and over and with conviction to anyone who will listen: nothing can shake his morale. He might have been the coach of the worst team in this World Cup, he still believed in his heart in a second consecutive World Cup title. Even when the numbers are in front of him. Four of the last five reigning champions fell four years after their coronation and failed to make it past the first round. Brazil, the winner of the competition held in Korea and Japan in 2002, reached the 1/4 finals in Germany in 2006.

The curse is pragmatic, not Deschamps. “This is a fact. I am always in high spirits, never in a negative mood, never asking myself if things are going wrong. I do the opposite, I do whatever it takes to make it go well. But nothing is going “right” with the French team right now. Among the competition favorites as the defending champions, the Blues do not really have the head of a winner going into the competition. Or at least not yet. “When we started the World Cup in 2018, there was also an unknown part,” recalls captain Hugo Lloris. Success is built through travel and matches.”

Inexperienced midfielder

A victory in Doha on Sunday 18 December would still be a feat. The French team has been hit by a host of injuries to managers, including Ballon d’Or winner Karim Benzema, each time going into the deep end with no certainty in the body of the unbeaten midfield duo Paul Pogba – N’Golo Kante. “DD” appeared in the French national team. The midfielder, with a total of 60 selections for the six players called up for this sector of the game, including 29 for Adrien Rabiot alone, is the biggest sporting issue of this international meeting.

The context is also heavy around the Blues, who were in their bubble in Doha but have been squeezed from all sides in recent months. The tremors began a year ago in Bucharest, when Swiss goalkeeper Yann Sommer saved Kylian Mbappe’s shot on goal to send France out of the Euros in the round of 16.

Tensions then arose around PSG’s star striker, who felt he was not getting enough support internally after that setback. Olivier Giroud has previously expressed his concerns at this team and Didier Deschamps, who has been in charge since 2012, has been questioned as head coach. Moreover, it is the first time that he will compete in Qatar without extending his contract, which runs until the end of the World Cup.

Sensitive environment, lack of sports certainty

The French team does not approach their first game against Australia this Tuesday with great composure. As if sportsmanship wasn’t enough, a flood of unsportsmanlike affairs overwhelmed the Blues’ preparation. “I, in any case, it’s calm and peaceful, because internally, it’s the capital,” says Deschamps, the coach most suited and able to catalyze the energy around the event, not the sides, of course.

Because the 98th world champion, who entered the selfie game with some foreign colleagues, after the press conference held on Monday, the athlete also has work to do. France’s last match, which ended in a 2-0 defeat in Denmark at the end of September, saw them switch gears and revert to a four-man defence, an organization they had failed to test before this Tuesday’s match. “We continue to believe in our luck, our group, our adventure, Lloris claims. Despite the whims, there is good energy.”

Mbappe key

Because be careful, but see France only as a simple and banal outsider. A wounded animal can be very dangerous, it bites. The French workforce remains one of the best in terms of quality at this World Cup with Kylian Mbappe the envy of the planet despite their numerous absences. One of the keys to success will be his partnership with Antoine Griezmann and Olivier Giroud in attack. As the adaptation of the youngest who will experience his first international competitions in Qatar. “We’ll be there,” Deschamps said. We will be there for this first game.

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