"Six more points to get." Despite a long and busy season, Didier Deschamps, present at a press conference on Thursday, said he was determined to continue and continue the flawless performance of the Blues in the qualifications for Euro 2024 to be held in Germany (June 14 - July 14). The coach also addressed the thorny issue of image rights in selection, while the leaders of the Federation are preparing to talk with Kylian Mbappé and Antoine Griezmann, captain and vice-captain of the Blues, on this subject.
21 of the 23 Blues summoned have already arrived in Clairefontaine - Jordan Veretout and Alphonse Areola will join them respectively Friday and Monday - to prepare for the next two games. At the top of its group after its victories over the Netherlands (4-0) and Ireland (1-0) last March, the France team will face Gibraltar in Faro (Portugal) this Friday 16 and Greece at the Stade de France three days later.
Smiles and sunshine for the arrival of Les Bleus in Clairefontaine! 😊☀️ #ProudoftreBleus pic.twitter.com/NWEC3JWA7l
— France ⭐⭐ Team (@equipedefrance) June 9, 2023
You will meet a first opponent supposedly weaker than the second. Will it influence the composition of your team?
DIDIER DESCHAMPS. I am not leaving with that intention. I do not have all the elements yet. Through the sessions, I would have a little more especially in relation to the form of the players. Out of respect for Gibraltar, I leave with the idea of putting the most competitive team possible. Certainly on paper it is not the most formidable opponent we will have to play, but these three points in terms of accounting have the same value.
The month of June is always a special month, where the Blues have experienced difficulties. Is that something you insist on with players?
It's never easy. When there is a competition, there is a specific objective. There, they have such a busy schedule... They all need rest. Yes, obviously it's my role and the role of my staff to make sure that it goes as smoothly as possible. It's never an ideal period, but there are those two games on the schedule and six more points to go.
With the physical and mental fatigue of the players, will you adapt your way of managing the group?
I made sure to advance the gathering a little bit to do some athletic work, in order to have some additional data. The players, even if they were on vacation, knew they were likely to have those two games. We always adapt. The goal is to bring this group of 23 ready for Friday, even if there may be differences athletically between one and the other.
With the replacement of Ferland Mendy by Jordan Veretout, should we expect Eduardo Camavinga to return to the position of left-back?
We learned about Ferland Mendy's forfeit late, so I had to adapt. The position of left-back is not the most provided today. In this situation, the France team returns to its March configuration, because I consider that Eduardo has the ability to play in both positions. It is he today who brings the most guarantees, but that does not mean that he will not be used in the middle.
Philippe Diallo must meet the captain and vice-captain of the Blues about image rights. What is the status of discussions on this subject?
This is one of the important files that Philippe Diallo has to manage. There are the interests of the federation that he will defend, as the players will defend their interests. Things are moving forward, but it doesn't happen like that in a snap. The interests may be different but as long as there is goodwill on both sides... An agreement is bound to be reached at some point. Today it has no impact because there is no period of "shootings", but it is not a simple subject. Today's reality is not that of 2010 or 2012. It is important that there be this dialogue. I am confident that there will be a positive outcome.