Who will be the players who will make up the French Olympic team at the Tokyo Olympics?
As the tournament kicks off in almost a month, no one knows.
Not even Sylvain Ripoll.
The coach is faced with the reluctance of many clubs who face an insane schedule and who do not want to release their players in the middle of the transfer window.
Today it is a real headache facing the French Football Federation.
We are far from the excitement that surrounded the selection a few weeks ago when we mentioned the incredible breeding ground of the French team.
Green light for Gignac
In all likelihood, the Olympic team, whose selection must be sent by June 30 at the latest, may have a different look than that concocted for the final phase of the Euro Espoirs. Remember that the coach must retain 18 players (including 2 goalkeepers), and 4 reservists, relying on elements born after January 1, 1997 with the exception of three players maximum outside the age group. In this category, the presence of André-Pierre Gignac is acquired according to our information. The Tigers striker will be there. It remains to be seen who will accompany him in this historic adventure since the Blues have not participated in the Olympic tournament since 1996.
The constitution of the list has become very problematic.
It is all the more so since after having submitted an enlarged list of 80 to 90 players, the Federation reduced its list to 50 names communicated to the IOC and to Fifa on May 19.
Sylvain Ripoll is obliged to draw from this list, but several clubs still refuse to let go of their players, and in particular those where the reservoir is the most important.
This is the case of Rennes where we find Eduardo Camavinga, Adrien Truffert, Faitout Maouassa, as well as Martin Terrier on whom the coach would like to rely for the tournament.
Rennes, PSG, Monaco… It's no!
PSG have also made it known that they will not leave Colin Dagba available. The refusal is categorical, as it is for Kylian Mbappé, Marquinhos and Neymar. "It's not also", they say on the side of Lille, where we do not want to hear anything for Boubacary Soumaré, Jonathan Ikoné and Benjamin André, who are among the pre-summoned. Same story in Monaco (Tchouaméni, Badiashile, Disasi, Fofana, Aguilar), and at certain foreign clubs such as Hertha Berlin which retains for the moment Lucas Tousart, captain during the Euro Espoirs two years ago. Bayern want to count on Dayot Upamecano on the restart, Liverpool on Ibrahima Konaté, Leeds on Illan Meslier and Leipzig on Christopher Nkunku.
It is only at the goalkeeper position that everything has cleared up in recent days. Angers should allow Paul Bernardoni to compete, Brest would let Gautier Larsonneur go to Japan. This will not be enough to build a team. Ripoll faces a deadlock as the start of the rally has been set for June 28 in Clairefontaine, and the announcement of the list was due last week. The task is tough, especially since the Olympic tournament is played outside Fifa dates, which does not oblige the clubs to release the players. Discussions will continue in the coming days. Fifa is informed of these annoyances.