The draw for the qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup took place on Monday: France is seeded, in Group D, its first opponent is Ukraine, the second Finland. Bosnia and Herzegovina joins the group with Kazakhstan.
With Ukraine, Finland, Bosnia and Kazakhstan, can we consider that France has fallen into an easy group?
DIDIER DESCHAMPS. We can have different interpretations, but I’m not going to jump to the ceiling. By being seeded, France is the favorite, now we have to do what is necessary on the ground to qualify for the 2022 World Cup. We know some opponents very well, such as Ukraine and Finland that we have recently met. . But we never played against Kazakhstan. Now, we must above all wait for the calendar, because there are very long trips and others with climatic restrictions for certain countries. This can lead to additional difficulties.
Does the fact of having played certain teams this fall allow you to have a head start in your preparation?
We will already have references even if we will not meet the same Ukrainian team which, this fall, was greatly reduced by the cases of Covid-19 (7-1 victory for the Blues). But Finland is not a good memory ( Editor’s note: the Blues lost 0-2 in a friendly match in November ). Then, we will take information on the other teams in relation to the matches they had to play.
For once, there isn’t another big team in this group. How does that change the pressure on the France team?
The risk is to see yourself as stronger than others. France is the favorite, given its results. But we must not neglect these opponents, do a little less and think that the field will prove us right. So you have to have enough respect for the opponent, and have the same determination and the same focus to qualify.
Who is the most dangerous opponent in this group?
Ukraine and Finland seem more armed than Bosnia and Kazakhstan because of their positions in the groups. Ukraine lost their last game on the green carpet, but they are on the rise. Finland, I discovered them, but their players did very good things against us. They are logically superior to Bosnia and Kazakhstan.
Do you fear the calendar of the year 2021 with the qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup, Euro 2021 and the Final four of the Nations League?
I do not know what the health situation will be next year. The schedule will be busy, but we will have to adapt. We saw this fall that it is not easy to link 3 games with travel, especially if we have two away games. In addition, we will get to the heart of the matter from March with three qualifying matches for the World Cup, then Euro 2021. We will have to realize immediately the importance of the meetings .
Article original de: www.leparisien.fr