France's Euro 2024 Qualification Journey: Manager Deschamps Stays Cautious Ahead of Ireland Clash
|France's Euro 2024 Qualification Journey: Manager Deschamps Stays Cautious Ahead of Ireland Clash(Image-Getty)
France currently enjoys a comfortable position at the top of their Euro 2024 qualification group, but their manager, Didier Deschamps, remains cautious as they prepare to face Ireland in Paris on Thursday.
In Group B, France has played four games, securing maximum points and maintaining a clean sheet by not conceding a single goal. While they are well on their way to qualifying, Deschamps remains grounded in his approach.
Deschamps conveyed his pragmatic outlook, stating, "I've already experienced situations where 'almost' is not good enough. I am pragmatic and factual, and the players are aware of that too. If that's enough, it's enough, but let's focus on earning the points."
France began their qualification campaign impressively with a 4-0 victory over the Netherlands. However, they faced a tougher challenge when they secured a narrow 1-0 win against Ireland in Dublin in March. Deschamps anticipates a similar contest in Paris.
"The match in Dublin was challenging, having played against the Netherlands just three days before, while Ireland had a friendly match, which gave them freshness," he explained. "Ireland possesses quality, and we need to be more present on the field and pose more defensive challenges. They have a well-organized defense, and we can expect a similar situation tomorrow."
Deschamps also refuted rumors regarding the availability of forward Randal Kolo Muani for the game against Ireland, clarifying, "He participated in yesterday's training session on the field and was not in the gym. You have incorrect information."
Kylian Mbappe was expected to attend the press conference, but instead, vice-captain Antoine Griezmann represented the team. Griezmann discussed the challenges of adapting to a midfield role for the French national team.
"It was complex to transition into this position, switching quickly between my role at Atletico and the one I have here," Griezmann acknowledged. "Regardless of whether I play in midfield or up front, I'll give my best, and I understand my responsibilities."
Griezmann also braced for another tough match following the close victory against Ireland, acknowledging the pivotal role played by goalkeeper Mike Maignan. "Maignan saved the team on two or three occasions. We anticipate a high-intensity game, and we'll need to maintain possession to avoid excessive pressure," he added.
Following their match against Ireland, France will travel to face Germany in a friendly match on September 12th.