France and Australia open their World Cup in Qatar 2022, as in 2018

Luis Miguel Pascual |

Doha (EFE) with the open wound of Ballon d’Or loser Karim Benzema.

If Didier Deschamps’ team was already deprived of the Real Madrid striker, due to a technical decision, now an injury also leaves them without the contribution of a footballer who, over time, has experienced a exponential growth to reach the peak of individual awards.

The national coach of France, Didier Deschamps, during the press conference this Monday in Doha. EFE/José Mendez

A defeat that comes on top of others in a squad hard hit by injuries, as they arrived in Qatar without two 2018 title showpieces, Ngolo Kanté and Paul Pogba, saw Christophe Nkunku leave shortly after starting concentration and a time in the Persian Gulf. said goodbye to Benzema.

Seeking to become the first team to defend the title since 1962, Deschamps is working hard to convert the setbacks that spur a rejuvenated side, which is forced into the arms of Kylian Mbappé, the star who emerged in Russia and who now , more consolidated, aspires to extend its laurels.

The Paris Saint-Germain player, mute since his arrival in Doha, is attracting more and more attention every day and at 23 he has before him a new opportunity to show his mental and footballing strength. “We need him to make the difference, but he’s part of the group, he’s part of the collective work,” said the coach, eager to take some pressure off him, who, true to his credo, Deschamps prefers to put in the group and not under any name. .

Giroud for Benzema

With the same philosophy, he faces the loss of Benzema, which he assures himself that beyond the loss of quality it entails, it does not modify the plans of France, which will once again have the experienced Olivier Giroud, at the helm at 36. years supporting the French attack again.

The coach also recovers Raphaël Varane for the defense, lame in recent days but who is fit to serve, like Real Madrid player Eduardo Camavinga, although in his case it is unlikely that he will start as a starter.

El capitán, Hugo Lloris, que ya lo era en 2018, sabe de la importancia de comenzar bien la andadura “para crear una dinámica positiva”, como sucedió entonces, al tiempo que recuerda que en su debut contra Australia en Rusia lo único bueno fue the result.

France goalkeeper Hugo Lloris during the press conference in Doha. EFE/José Mendez

“We wouldn’t like the game to look like this,” said the Tottenham goalkeeper, who remembers the sweat of a duel that ended in an 80th-minute own goal from Aziz Behich . this appointment, but Graham Arnold’s men retain the same fighting spirit that nearly ruined France’s options.

If in 2018 their players were those who ran the most together with the Iranians, they now rely on the same physical determination to seek for the second time in their history to overcome the group stage, after having done so in their first World Cup. in 2006. For their fourth consecutive World Cup, the Australians intend to impose themselves in the momentum that was created after obtaining the place in the play-off against Peru on penalties, an incident that boosts morale.

  • Probable compositions:
    France: Lloris; Konaté or Varane, Upamecano, Lucas Hernandez; Tchouaméni, Rabiot, Rabiot; Griezmann; Dembele, Giroud, Mbappé.
    Australia: Ryan; Karacic, Souttar, Rowles, Behich; Irvine, Mooy, Hrustic; Mabil, Duke, Leckie.
    Referee: Victor Gomes (RSA)
    Stadium: Al Janaoub Stadium
    Time: 10:00 p.m. local time (8:00 p.m. CET and 7:00 p.m. GMT).