The French Espoirs team will participate in the Tokyo Olympics from July 23 to August 8. If the coach of the Olympic Blues had great difficulty in forming his group, Sylvain Rippol is optimistic for the competition.
This is the first time since the Atlanta Games in 1996 that the Bleuets will participate in the Olympic Games. They are part of Group A with Mexico, South Africa and the host country Japan. Eliminated in the quarter-finals of the Euro Espoirs last May against the Netherlands (2-1), Sylvain Ripoll hopes to achieve a good competition this summer.
“We have to live up to these meetings and it is true that there was the disappointment of the Euro Espoirs and the elimination against the Netherlands. We had to quickly plan for the Olympics , a competition that will still be special. It’s new for me to arrive with a group of such diversity and to have to be very efficient in 15/20 days. But I’ve been living it really well since the start of the preparation. . There are a lot of positive vibes, a desire for lightness in the face of the constraints that we have experienced and a great determination to go for a good performance. It may augur good surprises, “he told AFP.
The experienced André-Pierre Gignac back in Blue
This competition being reserved for players under 23 years old, the coaches have the right to take only three players born after 1997. For the French team, these are the two former players of Olympique de Marseille today to the Tigers of Monterrey (Mexico), André-Pierre Gignac and Florian Thauvin as well as the Montpellier Téji Savanier.
Sylvain Rippol is delighted to be able to count on this type of player: “When I told them about the project, they did not think five seconds. They were immediately thrilled and extremely happy that we think of them. Between my preliminary intuitions and what I perceived, it was therefore very clear. For this list, some things took a long time to emerge, but that, really not at all … “
The French team will start their competition on July 22 against Mexico at 10 a.m. French time, a special match for Gignac and Thauvin who will continue three days later, on July 25 against South Africa also at 10 a.m. before finishing the match. group stage, on the 28th against host country Japan at 1:30 p.m.