Saturday, 11 June 2016
France in with a chance? Post Romania thoughts.
Euro 2016 kicked off in fine fashion last night. After an enthusiastic opening ceremony the tournament kicked off with the hosts France taking on Romania. They won the game, but did they show that they were contenders for silverware this summer? or was it a shaky start? I'm going to be taking a look at some factors to consider when looking at whether France can go all the way this summer.
1. They have the talent
- One thing which is for certain is that France have remarkably talented players within their squad. Match winner Dimitryi Payet just 1 of the names of players within the line up who is capable of providing spectacular goals and assisting other team mates. Paul Pogba has shown his remarkable talent for club and country for a few years now despite still only being 23 years old, with this strength in midfield, Payet's fantastic shooting and technical play, and Antoine Griezmann's pace and work rate, It is unquestionable as to whether France have attacking power, combined with the experience of there defence and the overall strength of engine midfielders Blaise Matuidi and N'golo Kante, they certainly have the players capable of winning the title.
2. Home Advantage
- Of course it is going to mean much more to the France team as they're performing in front of heir own fans, and they'll be looking to impress, and make the nation proud. It would be fantastic for French football if the side won this tournament on July 11 and would be extra meaningful to each and every Frenchman after the unfortunate Paris attacks last November.This however has made fans much more passionate to chant their team to victory, and if they make it to the final, the support of their home crows will definitely be a huge advantage.
3. They don't stop running
- As previously mentioned, the work rate of some of the French players last night was incredible. After watching N'golo Kante this season for Leicester we know that his game is never ending, and its true that he probably ran to the Stad de France his home in England, played the match last night and then ran home again without even stopping to catch his breath. However he isn't the only player who stood out for having a tremendous work rate last night, someone who somewhat went unnoticed was the tracking back of attacker Antoine Griezmann. He came in and won the ball on numerous occasions and was always looking to pick up the ball from the midefield to push forward, outstanding effort, he was breaking play down and enabling France to build up again, which is remarkable for a predominantly attacking player.
Despite these reasons, as evident from the way Romania caused problems for France, it wont all be plain sailing for the host country, here are some weaker areas which they need to tighten up if they are to pose a threat to strong contenders like Germany and Spain.
1. Not the best Defence
-It is worth noting that every member of the French defence which played yesterday was 30 or above. There is no doubt that this means they have remarkable experience but it was evident that the two central defenders weren't comfortable alongside each other last night. Unfortunately some French defenders have sustained injuries which hasn't helped, but either something needs to be changed or the back four needs to work hard in training to learn each others game, to come out stronger and tighter for their next fixture.
2. Hit and Miss players
-It is fair to say that a couple of players in the French team can turn up every week for their club side but struggle on the international stage. Surprisingly for me one of these players is in fact Paul Pogba, there is no doubt he has remarkable talent and perhaps if he were left out of the team for a game we'd see just how much of an impact he has, but certainly in the last World cup he didn't produce a standard of football we know he is capable of, and maybe his style of making football look efforless has grown on him too much and hes scared to take risks and push himself on the international stage.
Another player who gets a considerable number of chances and also misses an incredible amount of chances is Olivier Giroud, whilst I'm not criticising him for missing chances, because the onger you are getting chances the more chances you have of scoring, and it's when you fail to create chances that you should begin to worry, his goal scoring seems to be very hot and cold , luckily for France he got off the mark yesterday, and when he begins to get his eye in he can honestly be one of the best strikers in Europe, but when he goes a few games without scoring he often struggles to find his feet again and pick himself up again, so hopefully for France he'll go on now to get plenty of goals this tournament.
Overall it is clear to see why France can win the Euros, but they need to improve after yesterday's performance, although it was still brilliant that they came away with all 3 points and puts them in great stead for the rest of the group stage. They'll need to perform for their crowd as all eyes are on them, but they are undoubtedly capable, and should be looking to go all the way, not my personal favourites to win, but there has only been one game of the tournament played so far, so it's would be very difficult to predict, but they're certainly up there, and they're in it to win it.
Posted by GSD at 02:00