From an almost unanimous opinion, the French team, the reigning world champion, is the big favorite for the final victory at the Euro, which begins this Friday evening in Rome with Turkey-Italy. Before the entry into contention of Didier Deschamps’ players against Germany on Tuesday, here is why the Blues can dream of a third European coronation, on July 11 at Wembley.
The Blues are world champions
A status that they have fully assumed. Since the world title conquered in 2018 in Russia, Didier Deschamps’ players have lost only three times in 36 games (against the Netherlands, Turkey and Finland). The relatively young group at the Russian World Cup has changed little and now has three more years of experience. The Blues will also be able to rely on their executives so as not to ignite. “The matches, it is not won on paper, but on the ground, reminds captain Hugo Lloris. Is the France team the best team in the world? There is this status of world champion but There are very big nations, other favorites as well. At a very high level, if you don’t show humility, you can pay dearly. “
We dreamed of it, Didier did it. While we no longer believed in it, Didier Deschamps recalled, to everyone’s surprise, Karim Benzema after more than five years of exclusion from the selection. At 33, the center forward is at the top of his game. He is coming out of the most successful season of his career with Real Madrid, a club he has carried on his shoulders since the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo. With Mbappé and Griezmann, he forms the most feared attacking trio of the Old Continent. Now it remains to be shown on the pitch because the addition of stars has never been an absolute guarantee of success in football. And if we all wait for the player with 83 selections to explode his counter, blocked at 27 goals, he must also deal with a crutch that shortened the last preparation match on Tuesday against Bulgaria (3-0).
An impressive offensive armada
Never have the Blues possessed so many offensive assets. “It’s unheard of,” exclaims Michel Platini, who has yet seen others. In addition to the Mbappé-Benzema-Griezmann trio, Didier Deschamps will be able to rely during the Euro on Coman, Dembélé, Ben Yedder, Giroud and Thuram. Very heavy and a dream bench that offers all profiles to breeders. With the Blues, the danger comes from everywhere in attack. Tuesday, Benzema out, Olivier Giroud took the opportunity to score his 45th and 46th goals in the selection. Too bad this double was a little tarnished by the bickering between the Chelsea player and Kylian Mbappé. But the competition promises to be tough and places very expensive.
They are feared by their adversaries
A favorite among bookmakers, the French team is also a favorite for many of its competitors, starting with the first, Germany. “We know France very well, it is the team in the world that adapts best to its opponent, observes the selection of the Mannschaft Joachim Löw. We know how they play and yet it is almost impossible to discern them, because they are extremely flexible. It comes from the incredible individual class of their players. They are extremely strong and very difficult to predict. ” For José Mourinho, “France could make an A team, a B team and a C team”. The Portuguese is also putting pressure by saying that any result other than a victory at the Euro will be a failure for the Blues. From the locker room of Juve, Adrien Rabiot reported also very laudatory words from Cristiano Ronaldo, third opponent of the Blues: “He told me that we had a very strong, very solid team. It spoke a lot about the team of France within Juventus. But he also told me that we had to pay attention to them too. It’s a meeting he is looking forward to. ” Fear can quickly change sides …
With the 2002 World Cup, they are warned
To be a favorite, France has already been a favorite in its history. After achieving the 1998-Euro 2000 World Cup double, the Zidane generation presented themselves with this costume at the 2002 World Cup held in South Korea and Japan. In Asia, Roger Lemerre’s players had in their ranks the top scorers in Ligue 1 (Cissé), Serie A (Trezeguet) and Premier League (Henry), and the freshest European champion with Real Madrid Zinédine Zidane. Except that the Ballon d’Or was injured in the last friendly match and that the Blues, cooked and sufficient, were eliminated in the first round without scoring a single goal. Deschamps, who was not in this adventure, has never forgotten it. “If you think ‘We’re here, we’re winning’, no, he told The Guardian. France were the big favorites, had the team’s top major league scorers and didn’t score any goals! Football is not an exact science. It shows how incredibly difficult it is to maintain the top level. “