How will the Blues get out of the group of death? / In partnership with Ricard /

France, Portugal, Germany: six Euros between them … Favorite of the tournament, France will first have to extricate themselves from Pool F, the most prestigious, against Portugal, second favorite, and Germany, outsider serious. Hungary should participate chirping …

In the summer of 2005, Zinédine Zidane returned to save the homeland. In spring 2021, Karim Benzema returns to help him … Because without Karim, the Blues were finalists of the Euro and world champions in Russia. On November 14, in Lisbon, on behalf of the League of Nations, they had achieved against a solid Portugal a master class of controlled management and lethal efficacy that they had known at the 2018 World Cup (a good 1-0 sufficient). At the heart of the game, the golden Griezmann-Pogba hinge had shown that she remained a driving force for the team. During the Euro qualifiers from which France came out first, it was Griezmann who had the most significant offensive performance with 3 goals and 7 assists. Finally, in front, Olivier Giroud with his 6 goals had himself finished top scorer for the qualifiers. Thus, even before the recall of Benzema by Didier Deschamps, France was already the reasonable favorite of the Euro, with arguments of shock. Still … At 33 years old, “Benz”, who has completed a stratospheric season with Real, should bring a plus, no doubt decisive, as we could judge against Wales in a friendly (3- 0). With him, the 4-4-2 diamond tested against Wales brings an additional tactical option to Deschamps’ usual “asymmetric” 4-2-3-1.

By playing on his two registers of finisher and offensive strategist, “KB” should normally be able to insert without too many problems at the forefront of this 4-2-3-1. Behind him, from left to right, we would find Rabiot (or Coman), Griezmann and Mbappé. The pair Pogba and Kanté (monstrous with Chelsea) in “double pivot” is placed as usual in front of a defense L. Hernandez, Kimpembe, Varane and Pavard. Lloris closes the casting of a team which should arrive among the fittest (least tired) teams of the tournament. And which also has reserve, compared to other selections! Because, in addition to the eleven type, the workforce offers each line interesting coaching options from Russia 2018 and more recent conscripts (Maignan, Koundé). With an already impressive offensive potential, enriched by other sacred applicants (Coman, Dembélé, Thuram, Ben Yedder), the Blues now display a status of reinforced number 1 favorite … A calendar difficulty will however require the Blues to be at the Entry cleat with a first match in Munich against Germany, then the next two in Budapest against Hungary, then against Portugal.

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Guèche party, Deutsch repartis?

The Blues will therefore play their last crucial game against the Portuguese, other favorites of the tournament, even with a slightly lower odds. Because since its first two international titles (Euro 2016 and League of Nations 2019), Portugal has changed status and makes it known. Last December, coach Fernando Santos declared the Portuguese selection candidate for the world title in 2022. These comments are perfectly admissible. Mainly because the somewhat limited workforce in 2016 has grown considerably since then. With the superb club performances, among others, of Bruno Fernandes (MU), Diogo Jota (Liverpool) or both Citizens Cancelo and Ruben Dias (elected player of the year in the Premier League), Portugal has a new golden generation. With his many midfield and attacking cracks, Fernando Santos must now solve, after having tried many systems, the delicate problem of offensive animation. By installing the excellent B. Fernandes in 10 behind Ronaldo (rather than João Felix, another alternative used)? During Portugal’s last two games, D. Jota on the left and Bernardo Silva on the right (3 goals and 6 assists in the playoffs) completed this generic quintet. Critics of vampirization by Cristiano of a selection that plays better without him, the question was quickly resolved: 11 goals in the playoffs, 101 in Selection in September and 29 pawns of top scorer 2021 with Juve! Reminder: since 1996, Portugal has always reached at least quarters to the Euro …

With its three crowns (1972, 1980, 1996) and its three finals, Germany offers the best record of this competition and could undoubtedly claim the last four again. Because even with wooden teams, including in the World Cup, it has often performed well in the past. However, the team 2021 is made of precious wood. In the middle, especially: Gündoğan, Kimmich, Goretzka, Can and Kroos! And in attack? Sané, Gnabry, K. Havertz, T. Müller, Volland … The doubts that accompany this team in view of its recent setbacks (0-6 in Spain, 1-2 against little North Macedonia) are largely due to a flagrant lack of efficiency in front (cf. the failure of Werner against Macedonia!), more than worries of offensive animation and the choice of the players supposed to put it in place. Except for a general off-topic in Spain, Germany is still creating a lot of opportunities, as against Denmark in a friendly (1-1, June 2). In front, with in addition the recalled Thomas Müller, the team therefore do not start from zero. It is up to Mats Hummels, the other drafted, to stabilize a constantly reworked defense which remains the real weak sector … Watch out for Germany, however! This wounded tiger profiled Bayern will play all his group matches in Munich! Finally, if Hungary had pleasantly surprised in the group of Euro 2016, its elimination dries up in 8it is then her absence from the 2018 World Cup, as well as her hard-won qualification for the Euro in League A play-offs put her in her place. Unless there was a huge surprise, she would end up last in the group. The gifted No.10 Dominik Szoboszlai, third element of the spine stamped RB Leipzig with Gulácsi (goalkeeper) and Orbán (central defender), finally withdrew for injury. However, he was the keystone of the Hungarian 3-4-1-2 built especially around him. And his deputy Zsolt Kalmar is also forfeited … So many tiles! However, we must not underestimate the great collective mental strength of this Hungary, become justice of the peace of a hen where the three big ones will engage in a knife fight …

Cherif Ghemmour

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