Before facing Kazakhstan this Sunday at 3pm, go back to what didn’t work against Ukraine on Wednesday at the Stade de France.
Against Ukraine on Wednesday at the Stade de France, for the first qualifying match for the 2022 World Cup, France could only get a draw (1-1). A bad result that reflects a big problem in French offensive animation.
The Blues start the meeting well, however, with a quick opening. A sublime shot by Antoine Griezmann deceives Georgi Bushchan, (19 ‘). France is outrageously dominating the game and is in no danger. However, an offensive inefficiency is already present with a single shot on goal for 9 attempts. Returning from the locker room, Ukraine comes out a bit more to try to catch up. A slight change in appearance that disturbs the blue fang. Presnel Kimpembe deflects a harmless shot in his own goal (57 ‘). The Blues can no longer be satisfied with this score. This is where the lack of offensive animation is evident. Despite several changes, Giroud for Pogba, Coman for Dembele or Mbappé for Martial, nothing helped, the French attack was sterile. The finding is the same as in the first period, in 9 shots, France only scored 2.
Didier Deschamps: “It’s not just about placing offensive players. […] Just because you’re going to score three attackers doesn’t mean you’re going to score more goals. “
Didier Deschamps got it right. The problem against Ukraine was the terrible offensive animation that the Blues gave us. Blocked on the sides, supported by a three-way beacon, locked in the area, lack of speed, lack of movement … The French attackers did not know how to get out of the spider web woven by the Ukrainians.
A solid canvas imagined by Andrei Shevchenko, Ukraine coach : “We follow the plan. It was very difficult because we didn’t have much time to prepare, but I have to congratulate our players on the way they played against such a talented team that is France. It is a real satisfaction to accept this point. We have been preparing for a long time, we have tried to play compact, you cannot play open and suicidal against them. We put in more players to close the sides, this plan worked and the credit goes to the players we use today. “
In a second step, the 2004 Ballon d’Or confessed to having set up an “anti Mbappé” system. A true success like the Parisian was non-existent. At a press conference, the French coach did not overwhelm his player: “He knows it himself, that he did not play his best game. I’ll talk quietly with him. I’m not going to focus on him anymore, although you obviously expect a lot from Kylian. […] The opponent has also adapted. When he had the ball, he often had two or three players on him. He minimized his influence on the game. “
Didier Deschamps: “It’s not like on the Playstation, you don’t just have to line up the attackers, that requires balance, replacements …”
By getting very few clear opportunities, Kylian Mbappé did not weigh on the match, in a 4-4-2 system, with four offensive players, which did not convince anyone. This system is reminiscent of a formation used during the last World Cup in an opposition against Australia. A formation that, too, had been synonymous with failure. Didier Deschamps never tried a similar tactic again. Perhaps an identical fate awaits this new system.
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