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Rugby: France-Wales, an expensive match


To organize this friendly meeting this Saturday evening behind closed doors at the Stade de France, the French Federation had to make concessions

It's nice to have blinders.

This allows you to move forward without asking questions, without even realizing that you are actually going backwards, and to avoid seeing that the weather is turning stormy around you.

What the devil did the XV of France come to do in this galley?

Why play a friendly match behind closed doors in Saint-Denis, at 9:10 p.m. this Saturday, against Welsh players who escape the confinement of their population, to defy the curfew in Ile-de-France?

What interest, while the Blues will not miss battles with the last day of the Six Nations Tournament 2020 - which they can win - against Ireland in a week at the Stade de France, then the Autumn Nations Cup, organized competition in order to compensate for the absences of teams from the Southern Hemisphere in November, with oppositions against Fiji, Scotland, Italy and a classification meeting in early December.

"We have only had one training session but we will be ready," said coach Fabien Galthié, more and more obscure in his statements.

Well, we understand a bit of history anyway.

World Rugby, the International Federation, needed to organize matches.

The French Federation, of which President Bernard Laporte would see himself, after the second term he has just started in France, to become its boss, followed, even if it must cost at least 2 or 3 million euros at the FFR.

Record TV audiences?

The operation is carried out above all in contempt of the Top 14 clubs - which bring rugby to life in France - even more strangled by the forced and exaggerated releases of their internationals while they are already suffocated by the consequences of the pandemic of Covid-19.

They therefore said stop.

Result: while they were ready to make efforts going beyond the agreement between the Federation and the Professional League by releasing 42 players for five games, the showdown engaged around France-Wales has led to a completely different situation. .

To save face and organize this friendly match in front of empty stands, Laporte has therefore accepted that the XV of France will only retain 31 players and, above all, that each of them will be aligned for only three meetings maximum this fall.

The famous arrow of Galthié's time has come to a stop, suspended in flight.

The coach, so attached to the curves and the numbers, hinted at his embarrassment when choosing his team for this Saturday.

“When we called the players, we didn't know the context would be that one,” he mumbled.

So let's sum up: a preparation match without a stake approached with only training, the best Habs lined up for a maximum of three out of six matches this fall, a serious deficit for the FFR, a Top 14 day losing its flavor with in particular watered down shocks like the Stade Français-Racing 92 derby, Toulouse-LOU and La Rochelle-Bordeaux-Bègles… The only consolation, this XV of France who had enchanted the crowds last winter, renewed in its entirety, promises record TV audiences on a Saturday evening curfew.

Or it is to be desperate.

Source: leparis

All sports articles on 2020-10-23

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