The star was (obviously) Henry
Thierry Henry has already had the opportunity to speak on this subject: with him, the France Espoirs team attracts much, much more light. The TV production of the match, the very attentive listening of Les Bleuets and… the requests for photos from the Danish players at the end of the match proved that the charisma of the 1998 world champion had its effect once again. With him, this team will be attractive as ever. But under pressure, too.
4-4-2 diamond and offensive ambitions: “We had some benchmarks, a plan”
Henry is only in the early stages of his tricolor adventure and has had very little time to get his first ideas across to his group. However, we distinguished the desire to press and control the ball of the ex-Gunner, who chose a 4-4-2 diamond with Rayan Cherki in number 10 behind Arnaud Kalimuendo and Bradley Barcola. A complex system to animate defensively, especially on the sides.
Les Bleuets thus suffered at the start and end of the match against an interesting opposition, and conceded a goal on an alignment error. But they have mastered their subject for the rest, being naturally very forward-looking. We will especially remember the first act, the second having been marked by a multitude of changes.
“We had a few benchmarks, a plan. When you make a lot of changes it becomes difficult, we destructured the team a bit. I think there was a lot of action, a lot of play, between the lines , short game, always the possibility of going to the side. A lot of things to refine but it’s normal”, reacted the coach after the meeting.
Zaire-Emery, the strong choice: “It allows me to open up”
Henry had not hidden his admiration for the Parisian midfielder from his first press conference. The words were followed by deeds since the former Blues striker did not hesitate to make the 17-year-old player, the youngest of the group, his captain.
“I’m very happy to be captain of the Espoirs, savored the immense talent of PSG at the microphone of the L’Equipe channel. The coach came to talk to me, he told me what he expected of me. Me , I told him that it was not a problem for me. It is something good, it allows me to open up, which I do very little. I will try to be the best captain”. While being one of the best on the pitch, a box he ticked on Thursday.
“I wanted to see if he was ready to be a captain, replied his coach after the meeting, in remarks relayed by Le Parisien. Warren gave me a lot of positive answers whether in the locker room or on the field. ” It promises.
Remains and Wahi mark the spirits
Beyond the young but so mature captain Zaire-Emery and a Cherki who, despite some bad choices, regularly lit up the game with a bonus goal, we will remember the performances of two men: Guillaume Restes and Elye Wahi. The first, who became a starter in Toulouse at the age of 18, was also chosen as goalkeeper for Les Bleuets and delivered a very promising first, marked by a prodigious double parade in the 9th minute of play.
The second was on the bench at kick-off. But he seized his chance perfectly by replacing Kalimuendo at the break, with a double in the key. While waiting to fully integrate into RC Lens, the former Montpellier player has scored valuable points in the selection. All of this will be confirmed on Monday, for the start of the Euro 2025 qualifying campaign.
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