Winning World Cup Would Be Great Twenty Year Anniversary Gift For France

It’s crazy to think that France 98′¬†happened twenty years ago. That was a truly amazing World Cup with the hosts winning it with a 3-0 win over then reigning champions Brazil in the final.

Now we have another World Cup this summer, this time in Russia, and it could be the French side’s best chance to regain that famous trophy since that night back in July 98.

In 1998, France had a terrific squad and they were strong in pretty much every department. One of the leaders in the Les Bleus ranks was holding midfielder¬†Didier Deschamps and he’s now the head coach of the national team. If anyone has the ability of recreating that winning spirit, then you’d like to think it will be him.

Yesterday the coach named his twenty-three man squad and like in 98′ it looks very healthy and well stocked with talent.

In fact when you look at the names missing from the pool going to Russia, you understand the great strength of depth Deschamps has to choose from.

A team of Benoit Costil, Mathieu Debuchy, Lucas Digne, Kurt Zouma, Mamadou Sakho, Adrien Rabiot, Moussa Sissoko, Kingsley Coman, Anthony Martial, Alexandre Lacazette and Wissam Ben Yedder would probably go far in any international tournament yet none of these stars has made the initial squad.

Deschamps was quick enough to tell us that he has an incredible amount of top class personnel to choose from:

“It is always hard to pick a squad like this because of the quality of the players we have and the competition in each position. I could only pick 23 players. I can’t please everyone. I make choices and I take full responsibility for them,”

The twenty-three men that have been selected, represent a bit of everything needed to do well in a major competition.

You have a nice blend of youth with experience, Didier is always conscious of have older leaders within his team. Even if they don’t start many games people like Adil Rami and Steve Mandanda will be important in the dressing room.

Although Didier has himself stated that there’s probably more young than old in those selected, it’s for a reason:

“Less experience, more ambition.”

There also seems to be a nice balance of creative talent and industrious players too.

Deschamps himself was known as the ‘water carrier’ and he’ll value what the likes of N’Golo Kante and Blaise Matuidi give the side in terms of work rate, challenges and running.

You then have players like Paul Pogba, Ousmane Dembele, Thomas Lemar and Florian Thuavin in there to provide the tricks, passes and crosses needed to unlock the tightest of defences.

You should have plenty of goals in the team with Oliver Giroud, Kylian Mbappe and Antoine Greizmann providing the main threats.

If Euro 2016 was anything to go by, then the French boss will rotate throughout the tournament. Having such a strong squad will help him in doing that. It’s also what happened back in 98 and it helps keep everyone happy as they all feel part of the journey!

You’d imagine that Group C rivals Australia, Peru and Denmark will struggle to contain the French in the opening games.

A problem the Les Bleus have had in the past has been their attitude. Some of their illustrious footballers have downed tools in previous campaigns and have seriously underperformed as a result.

It will be important for Didier Deschamps to have a happy, content camp. Hungry and ambitious players will be key but they can’t act up or form splinter groups. There has to be a party line and the whole squad need to know that they can’t cross it.

If the manager can keep his stars in check and have them all pulling in the same forward direction, then who knows maybe France can celebrate their first World Cup triumph by winning it again twenty years on!

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