Former Arsenal defender Clichy is regarded as one of the best left back for the French national team, but he has not been part of the squad in the recent matches. The Manchester City player has expressed his surprise at being omitted from the French national team by manager Didier Deschamps. The former Marseille man took over from Laurent Blanc in the summer after a poor run of form meant that the team crashed out at the Euro 2012. This was yet another disappointment for the nation at a major tournament. One of the main reasons for the recent performances have been the infighting within the squad.
There is a clash of several high profile personalities like Franck Ribery, which have been a cause of concern for previous managers as well. France reached the final of the 2006 World Cup, but since then they have been very poor. As a result, it is thought that Deschamps has made it a priority to keep a harmony in the dressing room. Clichy has not been regarded as one of the trouble makers in the squad. As a result, he is extremely surprised at being omitted consistently at the national team level despite his form at club level being good.
“I deserve my place. When Deschamps replaced Blanc, I was hoping things would change. I don’t feel I have had the opportunity to prove I am number one. If I had done something wrong, I could understand it,” said Clichy, who managed to win the league title in the first season after leaving Arsenal. However, City have failed to retain the title this season, but Clichy does have the opportunity to lift the trophy in the form of the FA Cup. City will be playing against Wigan in the FA Cup final at Wembley.
France Enthusiasts Online video Score: 1 / five
France Followers Video Score: / five
France Supporters Video Score: three / five
France had a great chance to extend their lead over Spain in the World Cup qualifying group to a position where they could have almost sealed World Cup qualification automatically by finishing the first position. They came into the recent match between the two teams two points ahead of the world champions. However, they suffered a 1-0 defeat at home due to a goal from Barcelona midfielder Pedro. This result now means that it is France who now have the possibility of reaching the World Cup only through the play-offs position.
It certainly will not be easy because there are several good teams expected to be at this stage of the qualification. Deschamps said after the match that he believed that France had several opportunities to win the match. However, he can only rue the missed opportunities now. Manchester United defender Patrice Evra had a great opportunity to equalise the match, but his shot was kept out by Barcelona’s Victor Valdes. France dominated the match in the final few minutes despite having just 10 men on the pitch. Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba was sent off in the encounter.
“There were situations that were unfavourable, but we had opportunities, even 10. We do not blush. It could have happened differently. We did see beautiful things. Spain is still Spain. We battled and they were not alone, even when we were [down to] 10,” said the former Marseille manager. As a result of this defeat, France have dropped into the second position one point behind leaders Spain. The next World Cup qualifying matches for Spain will not be until the start of next season when they take on Georgia.
The manager refused to criticise the Juventus midfielder for his red card. He also defended the recent record of the Real Madrid striker, Karim Benzema.
France Followers Video clip Rating: 5 / five
France Enthusiasts Video clip Ranking: one / five
France Supporters Video clip Score: five / 5
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