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Name Didier Deschamps
Gender Male
Ethnic French
Job French Footballer
Desc Didier Deschamps is FIFA World Cupchampion with France and The Best FIFA Men’s Coach finalist. With Zinedine Zidane waiting in the wings to guide this exceptional generation, the pressure is on Deschamps if he fails to win the World Cup. He did well in his first tournament in Brazil 2014 as France were only edged out by eventual champions Germany, but there’s a sense he has failed to take them forward from there

Affiliation

Org French National Team
Club as Player Juventus

Relationship

Teammate Zinedine Zidane
  Emmanuel Petit
  Patrick Vieira
1998 07 12
World Cup 1998 final where France defeat Brazil 3-0. Zinedine Zidane score 2 goals with assist from Emmanuel Petit and Youri Djorkaeff. also final goal came from Emmanuel Petit with assist by Patrick Vieira

2010 01 07 Retrieve

[Olympique de Marseille head coach Didier Deschamps has recently been linked with a move to the France national side, though he has not appeared especially enthusiastic about the prospect] I note that Monsieur Jean-Pierre Escalettes gives me some consideration, but I’m on the payroll of OM. I need lots of energy and concentration for the run-in

2015 11 21 Retrieve

[France coach Didier Deschamps paid tribute to England’s supporters for the respect they showed during Tuesday’s poignant friendly at Wembley] Emotionally, it was a very, very strong moment. We were all united in this moment of communion, which obviously lifts the spirits because you feel it in your heart. It’s beautiful, it’s moving, it’s grandiose. It’s very strong. This will be shown round the world and will show unity. Football is a global game. It is not about religion or race. We need to stand tall together in these tough times

2018 03 17 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps tells his reasons for calling up Sevilla’s Wissam Ben Yedder for upcoming friendlies against Colombia and Russia] [His call-up] is not just [because of] the two goals at Old Trafford. Even if it comes to his credit. He has played four or five seasons with more than 15 goals. He does not play every game, but he has the ability to score when he comes on. This is not the case with everyone. He has a different profile, he has mobility and liveliness. It is extremely effective

2018 07 09 Retrieve

[France coach Didier Deschamps played alongside a youthful Henry when Aime Jacquet’s men enjoyed their finest hour on home soil 20 years ago] I’m pleased for him. He’s somebody I really appreciate. It is a difficult situation, it really is not easy for him. When you face your old team you are part of the enemy team but this time it is notch higher. He is on the bench and facing his home nation, but he did know that from the time he was joining the management team to be an assistant to Martinez this could happen. On a personal note it is a great pleasured that I am going to see him

2018 07 24 Interview

[Q: On the morning of July 12th 1998, you knew you would become World Champion. Did you have the same feeling on July 15th 2018?] It would be pretentious to say that! But yes, I knew it before. It was like that. It was written. It was destiny. Of course, you actually have to get the job done. But I believe in one thing only: destiny. Our destiny was written. It had to happen, and it

[Q: Croatia also had a destiny to write] Yes, but to each their own destiny. It’s also quite personal. My mother-in-law had spoken to me about this long before. She wanted me to be a World Champion, but she left us too soon. It’s a force from above. Even though I don’t want to come across as spiritual or religious

[Q: In 1998, your strength came from your brother who passed away in 1987, who you thought about when you finally lifted the trophy] You learn to live with and without it. These are painful life moments. Right before Euro 2016, I also lost my brother-in-law who was a football fanatic. Life takes people away from us, but it gives us unexpected forms of strength

[Q: What did you feel when Hugo Lloris lifted the trophy?] A lot of pride. There’s nothing greater than your national team. France will be on the roof of the world for four years. It’s a great accolade. The memories and emotions remain, but the titles more so because we’re competitive athletes. It’s more difficult to win trophies with your national team than at a club level where there are more opportunities

You only have the chance once every two years with your national team. In 2016, we let an incredible opportunity get away, even though we realise that it was a learning experience in hindsight. We were able to approach this World Cup differently. If I have to choose, then the World Cup is the most important one

[Q: You lifted the World Cup as a player and coach. Are the feelings any different?] Of course. When you’re a player, you’re an actor on the pitch, and you’re implicated. My staff’s accomplishment is thanks to my players, which is why you can never take that away from them. It belongs to them. When it doesn’t work, the coach is responsible 95% of the time, but when things work, it’s the opposite. But it doesn’t bother me at all. I’m just as happy for them as I am for myself, if not more!

[Q: he Platini generation has been spoken about, as has the Zidane generation. From this point onwards, you are the embodiment of this generation. How do you explain this?] These are just titles … It’s because I’m their ‘guide’ that it needs to be said. I also have a paternal side to me, with the good and the bad that goes along with it. It’s important tell one’s children, even if they’re not mine, what isn’t working, and what needs to change. There are people from different generations. It’s one group

I’m proud to be with them. Proud to still be here after 20 years and to still be here now. The blue, white and red colours are sacred. They have to continue to transmit values and they understand that. I have a young one at home [22-year-old son named Dylan] who speaks like them, has the same interests. I am lucky in that respect. A coach has to adapt

[Q: Did you plan on talking about your World Cup win in 1998 ahead of your game against Croatia?] On July 12th, I thought about our World Cup win because certain players reminded me of the anniversary of the victory against Brazil in the final in 1998 (laughing). You have to move with the times though. Nobody will erase what we did with that group, with Aimé Jacquet and the rest of the people present

This year, it’s a whole other story, a whole other generation. This victory will be fully lived by the generation aged between 5 and 30 years old. It’s a new story, all without erasing the previous one

[Q: Have you realised the incredible destiny you’re creating?] Yes, I have a professional destiny because life hasn’t always been easy. I’ve done everything to reach the greatest heights possible and to put myself in the conditions to succeed. When I get asked if I could go back to my player career, I say no. I wouldn’t do it again because I wouldn’t have been able to do as well

[Q: Does your professional destiny help cope with life tragedies and difficult moments?] No, it doesn’t compensate for what I’ve experienced. These difficult moments are lasting. They remain. There have been such painful moments which remain … But you live with it. And it certainly gives you strength

[Q: To what extent are you players different? They’re world champions now] Because they’re world champions. They are not only players in big European clubs, but world champions. I’m the national team coach. I’m privileged. I read what Franz Beckenbauer said (‘Welcome to the club’). I hope I’ll have the opportunity to eat dinner with him and Mario Zagallo who also won the World Cup as a player and coach. It’s a great honour to be amongst such a exclusive group of people

[Q: You showed a form of calmness as a player. Is the national team coach role exhausting from a mental perspective?] Honestly? No. I was calm and zen during the competition. You want to know why. Because I’ve won this cup. I was totally immersed. I didn’t want to be distracted. I was with my group, my staff, who are important to my work. My staff was incredible. There was a true feeling of solidarity with my twenty staff members. I always slept at ease. Much better than in 2014. I didn’t end up tired

[Q: Were you washed out psychologically?] No because I was able to recover. I managed to sleep, even in the worst of situations. I forget it and sleep. I didn’t even have to take any medication to sleep. I managed without biting my nails, even though I’ve been doing it for 45 years. I should have been stressed, but I wasn’t

[Q: Is France an ugly World Cup champion?] Why? Because it looks like me? (laughing) These questions always come up after a competition. The champion is better than the others, simply put. The highest level, is being better than those you come up against. When you beat an opponent, it’s because they’re bad. And when an opponent beats us, you shouldn’t discredit them

Sure, we could have done better. We didn’t always control games … But from the start, I made the choice of young players. Amongst the 14 who played their first major competition, it goes without saying that they’ll be better in two or four years

[Q: How did you become World Champions?] Through merit and the quality of the players on the field. Not through some holy spirit. My main pride is having built this group. There’s a collective force with this team. This force is also present with the opponent. But when at the same level, the team who wants it more or who gives the most makes the difference

[Q: What would you like to say to those who claim Belgium or Brazil played better than France?] Maybe so … We played an excellent Belgian team who caused us a lot of difficulty. Too bad for them. This World Cup was special. I noticed it right from the get-go. It didn’t always favour the teams who had the most possession. To quote Guy Stéphan (French assistant coach) I would say our team was precise like a surgeon. It’s the truth. We managed to hurt them

[Q: How did you react to this criticism?] I didn’t hear them. I knew they came up. I think they came up more often during the first part of the tournament. But it’s part of the job. I didn’t want to hear it. I can laugh now considering how far we made it. Others believed in us, others not. Over time, it accumulated, and I received a lot of messages, including a lot of people going back on what they said. I’m not here to settle scores with people. I respond politely. I know who the honest people are

[Q: Did you hear from any of your 1998 teammates before the competition?] Of course. Some players even came into the dressing room on the night of the final. Marcel Desailly, Laurent Blanc, Lilian Thuram, Jean-Pierre Papin. I was happy to see my players honour them. Zizou sent a message before and after the final. I saw Thierry Henry during the semi-final. I kept in touch with Aimé Jacquet during the whole competition

[Q: And Christophe Dugarry?] Let’s be serious. When you overstep your boundaries and there’s no respect on a personal level … It’s not only him that I done with. Dugarry said that I was taking France as hostages. It goes beyond basic reason. He can say what he wants, he has his radio show. We’ve lived things together, so I know that in terms of spirit, there’s better out there

Whatever, it’s ok though. I’m almost 50 and I don’t pretend around people anymore. I’ll gladly see most players. I’ve met with Laurent Blanc over lunch along with our wives. I’ve seen Lilian, Marcel, Lizarazu, Franck Leboeuf, Diomède … If I were to run into Dugarry, I wouldn’t even say hello. To each their own path. That’s very clear

[Q: Was the match against Peru the Eureka moment?] Yes because we had a rather uninspiring performance which didn’t correspond to what we were expecting in terms of implication and determination. Especially considering how demanding a World Cup is

Against Peru, I remembered our match against Colombia (3-2 loss for France) and said to myself, we need to use this. And it really did help us because I think we realised that we would be more implicated and determined against Peru

Destiny was written for us to get a very South American style World Cup with Argentina and Uruguay afterwards. But Peru was the game which shifted everything. After the game in the dressing room, the players all said, ‘So are we not a team?’ Some countries didn’t come together as a team and kept missing the target, until the moment where it just wouldn’t hit

[Q: In the TF1 Documentary, during half time, you were always calm and zen. Did you ever have moments of doubt?] No, I always ask myself questions, try to find answers, talk with my staff, exchange with them. There is also little room for doubt. The worst of things is that when you’re a coach, is to eat your guys alive. How can you talk or send a message if you’re always faced with doubt? It’s not credible

[Q: You could have had doubts in your room on your own!] No! I think first, and the answers come, sometimes later on though. I look one way, then the other, but when I’ve decided, I’ve decided. I put myself in a situation in which I give myself a deadline to make decisions. I always look ahead when deciding. I’m the only one who takes these decisions, and I decide later on. If I’m not relieved, then I don’t know if it’s the right answer

[Q: Paul Pogba really stood out in this TF1 documentary. He came across as mature, charismatic, and open to conversation. Do you agree with this?] Paul didn’t surprise me because I know how he is. He always thinks about the team. Obviously, I’ve spoken extensively with him because he’s endearing. I believe he listens. I do my best to help him omit certain things, even if he makes his own decisions. I found it smart for him to try to create a normal relationship with the media, instead of being seen as someone in their own world

[Q: How does he show his leadership?] For the younger players, he’s an example. He played in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and Euro 2016 in France. He’s part of a transitional generation. We often say and repeat that the team lacks leaders and personality. But no, they showed that during the tournament!

[Q: There’s one player who stood out during the tournament, and that’s Benjamin Pavard. He’s become a star with quite a surprising career path] He deserves it. He thanked me for it, but it was all him. I laughed and told him, ‘Apart from me or Guy Stéphan, your parents are the ones who watched you play the most!’

[Q: How do you explain his popularity?] He’s very reserved. He’s not very big on the media, and is in a club in Germany, Stuttgart which is not like Bayern. He doesn’t like to be focused on too much, but he’s always there. He’s nice, humane, but he’s has great self-confidence! He once told me, ‘I’m not scared of anyone, I’m fear nobody!’ To which I responded, ‘Listen, you’re allowed to think that, but don’t say it all the time, it could be useful!’

He’s like that. Lucas Hernandez is a bit different even though they’re the same age. He plays like he’s 30 years old. They are warriors on the pitch and have changed a lot of things. [N’Golo Kanté](n-golo-kante.html) is also very liked. It’s rare to see a discreet player like him be so liked … He’s not into the media coverage. He always smiles, is always doing well. The team loves NG. He’s a big ball of sunshine

[Q: Kylian Mbappé wasn’t playing at the highest level a year and a half ago, and he’s World Champion today. Do you consider him your golden boy?] It’s makes sense considering he was twelve years old a year and a half ago! More seriously, he knows he’s capable of things other players are not. He’s smart and attentive. I tell him he does things well, but people say that to him all the time

I’m here to tell him what he’s missing, but that’s only 5% of his game. It’s for his own good though. He listens and corrects these things. In 1998, David Trezeguet and Thierry Henry were the same age as him, but they also didn’t have the same role. He’s already a great

[Q: Have you ever coached anyone as good as him?] I’ve played with great players. I’ve also coach some yeah. But with him, it’s not just his ability. It’s his age, what he’s capable of now, and what he’ll be capable of in the future. There’s room for improvement. I’ve always said it, I’m happy that he’s French!

[Q: Against Australia, you didn’t hold back on him …] Yes, and that wasn’t the only moment. At one point, I said to him, ‘You’ll be the most booked player by the end of tournament, stop misbehaving like that’. He still managed to get two yellow cards

[Q: Why so mean?] His actions on the pitch also embarrass the opponents. He needs to be careful to not change. Being humiliated is never pleasant, so he shouldn’t seek it. I told him, ‘You’re lucky that I’m not your opponent, because otherwise I would destroy you, and believe me, I would only get one booking!’ Against Uruguay, he needed to be careful

They knew they were eliminated. They could have caught him, and ended his World Cup. That’s why I took him off. These are little flaws, with elements of entertainment and disrespect. The opponent will see it as a form of provocation, but one needs to be careful with these things

[Q: Do you cope with the music the players put on in the bus?] It’s amazing, I love it, even if I don’t understand everything. It’s varied. They have songs from the 1980s. One day, I looked at Guy Stéphan and said, ‘I’m worried, they’re gonna request something from me!’ [laughing] They played Michel Fugain, Michel Sardou

[Q: Did you touch Adil Rami’s moustache?] Yeah, it’s quite hard! It’s scary, it feels like a bat. Tiger brigade style. I don’t know if it’s lucky though, you’d have to ask Adil

[Q: What did you think about the picture of Emmanuel Macron after the first goal in the final?] He was really into it! The emotional side of things is irrational in football. Someone could reach the greatest honour in their respective field, and it wouldn’t have the same emotional significance as football does. I’ve experienced it first hand! He loves football. Thankfully, we made to the semi-final, otherwise he wouldn’t have been here

[Q: Adrien Rabiot refused to be a standby player. You chose Steven N’Zonzi over him, and he had a great World Cup …] I know why I didn’t pick Adrien. I knew that I would need Steven, but to fulfil Adrien’s role, I had other players ahead of him. Without discrediting what he did at club level, for the national team, all he had to do was watch the games, and see he was used. And I’m disregarding the statements he made. Otherwise, there are plenty of players who didn’t return to the team

[Q: Could he return to the national team with you at the head of the squad?] I’m not saying no to not come across as definitive. But what really disappointed me, was his attitude towards what the shirt represents. Even if I acknowledge that he wasn’t the only person responsible for this

[Q: If he were to apologise, would it make things better?] It’s up to him. He’s part of a generation that has difficulty apologising. That’s how it is. I won’t make this a case against him. I understand the huge disappointment of not being there. But to overstep that boundary in regards to me and his teammates … It doesn’t take anything away from his quality as a player, but it’s unacceptable. Players surround themselves with whoever they choose, people who advise them, be it good or bad advising. There are too many entourages nowadays

[Q: Do you realise that he may be in the national team when people think about the national team’s achievement later along the line?] I don’t think about that. It’s not about risks. I’m the way that I am, and respect my commitments. I do my best to reach my objectives. It’s also a matter of respect and trust vis-à-vis my president. I don’t think about myself. I didn’t even ask myself the question

[Q: You said that your defeat in the Euros led you to World Cup victory] We’ll find out in two years. You need to be careful because in sports: when you win big, you can also screw up big. Someone said this to me a while ago. The day-after is always difficult. I’ve experienced it first-hand. It took me six months to find my feet after 1998

[Q: What remains from this World Cup win and the French people’s excitement?] All I know is that we made them happy. Even if it was only for the slightest of moments. We never and will never claim to have the solution to social problems people face on a daily basis. We’re in a bubble, we’ll always be envied, money will always be brought up. But today, they’re proud to be French just like we are. We’re attached to this blue shirt

[Q: This win has a special taste after the tragic events France has endured during these last few years …] Considering how we’ve been harmed and the ever-present threat, the French needed to go to the streets and celebrate. It’s something which has influenced European fans’ decisions to not travel, while South American fans had no issue. We can never forget what happened. Football has been affected by this

[Q: Your team was able to provide happiness] It’s a privilege. We can make kids, parents, and grandparents happy! If you can make people happy and give them joy …

[Q: Do you think about defending your World Cup four years from now in Qatar?] I don’t think that far ahead. I’m still here for two years, that’s already quite good. We won’t have this World Cup taken away from us, but there will be another one in four years. My contract ends in 2020, and that’s good as is. I’m not worried about my situation. I wasn’t worried before the World Cup either

2018 08 04 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps talks about Benjamin Pavard’s and Lucas Hernandez’s positive performances at Russia 2018] Despite their former status and some inexperience at this level, Benjamin Pavard and Lucas Hernandez were brilliant and stabilised the defence. These two fighters made a big difference. Benjamin has become a star and he deserves it. He’s not so media-focused. He’s very friendly, appreciated by his team-mates, and has an incredible amount of self-confidence. He once said to me: ‘I’m not afraid of anyone!’ So I told him: ‘You can think that, but never say it to the media’

2018 09 15 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps speaks at the unveiling of the new name for Stade Marquet: Stade Didier Deschamps] It’s a tremendous pride and honour for me and my family to have the name of my family associated with this stage where many years ago I used to play when I was younger. The most important thing is the little ones, budding footballers

2018 11 10 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps believes the best is yet to come from youngster Kylian Mbappe] Kylian Mbappe is able to do extraordinary things. Look at his stats. He is efficient. Look at the goals he scored with his club and with us. He also made assists. He is a young player, who is doing very well at the moment. And he doesn’t ask anything. He is an offensive leader for PSG. For us, as well. But he doesn’t try to take more space than he does now. He does already and it is natural. Obviously, he can still improve and that is wonderful. But he is already very effective

2018 12 02 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps says Despite having a favourable-looking draw implored Les Bleus not to take the task lightly] There are teams that we know well because we usually meet them like Iceland and Albania. There will be a trip to Turkey, where it is always a very hot atmosphere. We realise that all matches are difficult. The qualifications are a long course and we will have to take more points than our opponents. There are no small matches and we will have to play them all with the seriousness and concentration necessary to achieve our goal

2019 09 03 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps has expressed concern over the effects of a possible lack of game time for Alphonse Areola following his move to Real Madrid] We will see in time if I have a problem. It is always better if goalkeepers have playing time. The situation is now complicated a little bit. He’ll be number two there [at Real Madrid] and I do not know if he will have have any time to play. If he does not play at all it can become problematic, but we will see at our next squad gathering in October

2019 09 06 Retrieve

[Though Navas has moved on from Real, Courtois faces fresh competition from Alphonse Areola - a player not content to play back-up and arriving in Madrid with a mandate from France boss Didier Deschamps that he must be playing] We will see in time if I have a problem. It is always better if goalkeepers have playing time. The situation is now complicated a little bit. If he does not play at all it can become problematic, but we will see at our next squad gathering in October

2019 09 07 Retrieve

[Deschamps said that Lille attacking midfielder Jonathan Ikone was one of several young Frenchmen he hoped to incorporate into the team] For Jonathan, his first selection is always remembered. But he’ll remember it a bit more with a goal, that’s good. There are young people who are there, whom I gradually incorporate

2019 09 08 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps praised Kingsley Coman’s performance in a comfortable 4-1 win over Albania in Euro 2020 qualifying on Saturday] It’s been a while since he’s with us. He was there before the Euros [in 2016] and before, younger. His match is more like what he has been doing for a year with Bayern Munich. He is more attracted to the goal and decisive. He always had this ability to destabilise the opponent […] it’s nice to see him on such a level

[Deschamps’ men were stunned by Turkey in June and while the coach has been pleased with France’s response, he said the defeat would not be forgotten] We will not erase it. We had already answered three days later with the victory in Andorra. We cannot erase it and it will not compensate for what we did not do. We had not done anything good that night. [Against Albania] we put what we are used to putting, beyond the quality of football, in commitment and aggression. I had no doubt or fear that my group no longer has the capacity. They have already shown it enough times. It was early June, we will not stay on it

2019 09 09 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps commended Clement Lenglet’s class on the ball as the Barcelona defender looks to cement a place in France’s starting XI] He had a great season with Barca. He has a lot of serenity, assurance and technical ease. He’s calm on the ball. Without being very big, he is also effective in duels and knows how to anticipate. He’s still improving but he gives off a lot of confidence

Both play for very big clubs, they are used to a very high level. Raphael has far more international experience than Clement. Obviously, the more matches they play together, the more the partnership can be refined

[France are top of Group H with five matches remaining but sit level on points with Turkey and Iceland] I will decide [on Tuesday] who plays, but there will be some changes. That seems logical to me. Even if the players who played Saturday want to play again, it will not be the same team, that’s for sure

2019 09 11 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps has praised Kingsley Coman’s efficiency after his strike in France’s 3-0 win over Andorra in Euro 2020 qualifying on Tuesday] I already told you that he’s added efficiency since last season. Dribbling, creating danger, he knows how to do it. To see him play this well is good for me. In a month, I will make choices but I’m happy for him; he needed that. What he has done in these two games is the same level as what he has done with his club lately

[France were guilty of squandering a host of chances against a side ranked 133 places below them in the world – most notably through Antoine Griezmann’s second missed penalty – but Deschamps refused to be too hard on his players after the game] It’s good, even if the score should have been heavier because of the chances we created. We did what we had to do in these September games. We had to take the six points. The six points is good, but the next six will be important too

2019 09 11b Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps concedes he will talk to Antoine Griezmann about his duties from the penalty spot] Antoine, he doesn’t gamble. When he had to score them, he scored them. When they were decisive, he didn’t tremble. It remains two failures. I will talk about it perhaps with him knowing, if there is another to shoot in October, he’ll be there

2019 10 03 Retrieve

[Pogba set to miss Liverpool clash as Deschamps confirms Man Utd star out for three weeks] It’s a new worry with his ankle. He played in the [Carabao] Cup, he played again on Monday against Arsenal. He again has a problem that’s going to keep him out of action for three weeks. I’d prefer he was there like all the available players but unfortunately he isn’t in a physical state to be present

2019 10 03b Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps has joked Frank Lampard should consider playing Olivier Giroud more often for Chelsea in exchange for the France boss leaving [N’Golo Kante](n-golo-kante.html) out of his last squad] Lampard asked me not to pick Kante at the last break. If that’s still the way I’m going to call him later to tell him it would be nice if you play Olivier Giroud a little bit!

[Deschamps admitted Giroud’s lack of playing time for Chelsea could work against him] I do not want to take away from what Olivier has done with us. He has put in some very good performances, not to mention that he is the third-best active French scorer. However, I hope his situation develops. Beyond his efficiency with us, it is a matter of rhythm too. He has already gone through spells where he has played less, but now it is not sufficient physically - he cannot be at his best.

[Mbappe has featured as a second-half substitute in PSG’s last two matches after missing more than a month] Kylian Mbappe is back from his first significant injury, so the worst is now behind him. I am not going to take risks with him, despite our two important matches. He has a match with PSG this weekend and then we will see his physical condition. Two 90-minute matches in three days is unlikely

2019 10 12 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps says Chelsea star Kante’s injury not too serious] He felt a pain in his adductor muscle. He had a feeling where he didn’t feel comfortable to play. I made the decision [to remove him from the team], because maybe it could get worse. I knew Moussa would be ready. I do not think it’s too serious for [Kante], but I do not have an answer [to whether he’ll play against Turkey on Tuesday] tonight

2019 10 12b Retrieve

[France, who are the reigning World Cup champions, perhaps surprisingly sit second in European Championship qualifying Group H, level on points with leaders Turkey. Should they beat Turkey on Monday, however, they will automatically qualify for next year’s competition after digging deep to get past a stubborn Iceland side] We needed to win here and that wasn’t simple even if we had several chances to score a second goal. They’re always dangerous from set-pieces. That game was all about commitment and we lived up to that. We had a lot of the ball and we could have been out of danger with the chances we had at the end of the game. It’s a good win ahead of Monday, an important step

2019 10 13 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps refused to be drawn into the geopolitical controversy surrounding Turkey’s national team ahead of Monday’s Euro 2020 qualification showdown] We know the importance of the match. It’s a confrontation against an opponent who has the same number of points as us. There will be a good atmosphere, that’s obvious. As for the geopolitical problems, they are there but we will not think about that. We are in a sporting sphere. We must stay focused on it. I will not go into this debate [about Turkey’s goal celebration]. What interests me is just the match

[Deschamps feels being motivated solely by a desire for revenge would be counter-productive against a foe he rates highly] There is never revenge. We will not recover points that we lost. They beat us at home and that’s another game. It’s just a match that can be decisive. We have to make things happen differently this time. There is nothing positive to keep for us from that game at Konya, except Hugo Lloris’ performance. We failed and they were very good. But it will not necessarily be the same match.

Turkey are a team that has 18 points and they did not steal them. They are efficient and strong. They have only conceded two goals [during qualification] from set pieces. They have interesting offensive potential also with Burak Yilmaz, Cenk Tosun and Hakan Calhanoglu. They are experienced and animated by a state of mind and a passion. They’ve played some very good matches, especially against us. They have character

2019 10 23 Retrieve

[Time for another transfer? Giroud’s Chelsea spell set to end like his Arsenal career] Olivier is suffering in this situation [at Chelsea]. Before January, nothing will change. After January, though, it will be up to him. I hope he will have more playing time. But we cannot forget about his goals, his good performances. He scores, he makes others play well. He knows he is under pressure but he always responds

2019 11 07 Retrieve

[When asked if he had spoken to Lampard for an update on Kante’s fitness] I haven’t spoken to him. Kante has taken time to recover, he was back in training last week, in their squad for the Champions League. He is back to full fitness. If a player is available for his club, it is normal that they be part of this squad

2019 11 08 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps believes Antoine Griezmann will go on to enjoy a successful Barcelona career] Not at all. Even if you have great players at Barcelona, it doesn’t happen in a day. It depends on how they play, how they work with each other. Also, he’s put in different positions than the ones he has with France, even though he played [wide] a long time ago. He must fit in, the other players as well. He didn’t choose the easiest solution and it’s a big club, so the expectations are huge. He’s always part of a team, but he’s not used to it yet. Even when he’s not as good, he’s always positive for the team. With us, it’s a different situation, different position, he can play at his best position where I’ve put him a long time ago. Of course, he has a very important role in how we play

[Giroud has made just four Premier League appearances for Chelsea so far this season] I picked him last month because of what he did in the past. He’s an important player for us. He proves it on the pitch. When he scores, it’s good for him. It happens quite frequently and, even when he doesn’t score, he’s an important player for us. Sadly, the situation hasn’t evolved for him, but he is there because I trust him, because of what he has done in the past and in October. Of course, and he knows it, I hope the situation will change with his club for our games in March. He needs to play, even though he is very fit, he needs to be more on the pitch

2019 11 11 Retrieve

[Deschamps says Anthony Martial is likely to be included in the future] He was part of the French team on a regular basis, but recently he was often injured. He came back not so long ago and it’s going well in his role as a central striker with Manchester United. For a long time he’s been part of the players likely to be called up

[Deschamps also expects Paris Saint-Germain superstar Kylian Mbappe to be fit] [Mbappe] has not arrived yet, [but] will be there. There was communication between the two doctors on the fact it was a precaution. There was no particular concern compared to our Thursday deadline

[The reigning world champions meanwhile will qualify for Euro 2020 from Group H if they beat Moldova in Paris on Thursday, or if Iceland fail to win against Turkey] Qualifying has never historically been simple for Les Bleus. We only took one point from six against Turkey, but the main objective is to qualify. It’s our goal to finish first, but that’s not in our hands anymore because of Turkey. But even if we’re first, we wouldn’t necessarily be seeded for the draw [for the finals]

2019 11 14 Retrieve

[France boss Didier Deschamps says Antoine Griezmann’s early experiences at Barcelona have not been catastrophic] Things could be better, but I watch each match, and things are far from catastrophic. It is also a question of how he is used. He was in his best role with Atletico Madrid. Perhaps he is less decisive [with Barcelona] than he is with us. However, he knows his importance to us and my confidence in him

[Deschamps admits the situation is far from ideal for an experienced Olivier Giroud] Obviously, it is a difficult situation for Olivier Giroud. He knew since September that there was no obvious solution. He is coping with the situation, and it will not change before a door opens in January

2019 11 15 Retrieve

[Deschamps thrilled with Giroud’s France contribution] Is he indispensable? Because of what he does – whether he’s indispensable or not – he’s very useful, very effective. His goal didn’t give us qualification – we already had that – but it’s allowed us to take back first place

What he doesn’t have at Chelsea, he has here with us. He remains in the starting XI, and it’s not just been today or yesterday, it’s been a long time. Even when he has periods when he scores fewer goals, he allows the players around him to have opportunities and to score goals too

2019 11 15b Retrieve

[France coach Didier Deschamps among those to have backed Antoine Griezmann to find a way of delivering] Things could be better, but I watch each match, and things are far from catastrophic. It is also a question of how he is used. He was in his best role with Atletico Madrid. Perhaps he is less decisive [with Barcelona] than he is with us. However, he knows his importance to us and my confidence in him

2019 11 16 Retrieve

[Thuram’s breakout season has not gone unnoticed on the international stage either. The former European Under-19 Championship winner and recent France U21 international has found himself on the radar of senior manager Didier Deschamps] Marcus Thuram is developing well, his club is at the top in Germany. That’s very interesting. He plays in various positions, often as the second centre forward. He’s definitely one of the players we’re following

2019 12 01 Retrieve

[France manager Didier Deschamps accepted that his side will face a huge test in Group F, which will be played in Budapest and Munich] It’s a difficult group, but I think that Joachim Low and Portugal head coach [Fernando Santos] think the same thing. It’s the hardest group, but we have to accept it. We will need to be ready at the beginning of the competition because our first game will be against Germany in Munich. They will play at home. On paper, it’s a tough group. These two teams have many qualities and they recently had good results

[France’s first match will be against Germany at the Allianz Arena on June 16 before playing two games in Budapest] It could be better, but what can we do? Germany and Portugal are in our group. We know when we will play and where. We still have to wait to know our third opponent. But we already know the quality of two of our opponents. So we can prepare to be ready for the match day

2019 12 15 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps says Olivier Giroud’s career would be best served by leaving Chelsea in January] Giroud, like others, may have to move. His situation at Chelsea hasn’t changed in two months. It would be better for him, of course, to go to a club where he would get more playing time. If he can’t get it at Chelsea, the idea is to get it elsewhere. It’s his decision. I don’t know what offers he has, where it might be possible for him to get more playing time. We saw each other not so long ago. As with every player, he’s the one who decides. But keep in mind that it’s the daily life of players with their clubs that leads to France selection. He knows it. It’s up to him to decide the best solution for himself

He’s said he wants to go there. It’s the refreshing side of Mbappe to be interested in the Olympics and all they represent. He’s an international player but his employer is PSG. There will be talks with his club. I don’t want to send the hot potato their way, but it’s his employer who must decide whether or not to give him the chance. And then [Under-21 coach] Sylvain Ripoll will have to make his selection

2019 12 20 Retrieve

[Deschamps tips Zidane to coach France in the future] The next coach could be Zizou. At one point or another, it’ll be him. When you’re a coach there’s no age limit. It’s the results that make you last

[Deschamps will oversee the nation’s Euro 2020 campaign, with France drawn in Group F alongside holders Portugal, Germany and a play-off winner] It’s the most difficult group, but I think Joachim Low and Fernando Santos think the same thing. Germany will have the advantage of playing their three matches in Munich. On paper, but not only on paper, we’re expecting it to be difficult. I’m sure our opponents think the same thing. We all have the same objective and that’s to qualify and, if possible, finish top of the group. Only one nation can do that. We need to see whether three will come through the group. We mustn’t forget that potentially the best country possible could come through the play-offs as well to drop into our group

2020 01 06 Retrieve

[Didier Deschamps says Olivier Giroud is unhappy at Chelsea and should leave] I think yes. He knows very well he cannot be content with so little time. That is not even speaking about France, that is just on him. It is up to him to see which destination he prefers or chooses. I spoke with Olivier during the last international camp [in November]. Even during the one before, he already knew what is best for him. Olivier is not happy at this moment, based on the little playing time he is getting. It is not his fault; he is suffering through the situation. It is up to him to decide in order to have the best sporting conditions on a daily basis at club level

2020 02 26 Retrieve

[Kurt Zouma Is Becoming Increasingly Important to Chelsea] I thought Kurt Zouma became the best Chelsea defender this season after outgrowing the early season jitteriness. I don’t know the point Christensen a regular over him

2020 05 27 Retrieve

[Deschamps concerned over league restarts after coronavirus] I don’t want to judge, to condemn, to blame. The containment conditions are not the same for everyone. I have watched the Bundesliga since the resumption of matches in Germany. It certainly looks like football. I’m not going to talk about the pace or intensity of the matches, but some images seem so incoherent to me. I see players playing a game with all the elements specific to football: namely contact and tackles. And then, we see in the stands masked substitutes two metres away from each other. Honestly, I don’t understand. They are in the same enclosure, likely to come into play at any time. In the stands, is the risk increased? What an inconsistency. I do not like it. Life resumes with a lot of restrictions in all areas. In football, the resumption of certain leagues obviously responds, first of all, to an economic problem. Look at the decisions made in Spain and England. These two major football countries are planning the resumption of La Liga and the Premier League, but they have decided not to resume the women’s championships, which generate much less revenue. That says everything.

It worries me. Whether you are a coach or president of a club, we all have interests specific to our function. The physical integrity of my players is my main concern. Some abroad will resume competition without having carried out full preparation. No matter how much you say, such a break requires six weeks of refresher training with at least five friendly matches. That’s far from being the case. They will play matches every three days in the summer, in high temperatures. The risk of injury is increased. I was already denouncing very busy calendars. It will not work out and it looks even more concerning with very few breaks