Deschamps slams lacklustre France

PARIS • Didier Deschamps hit out at his team's lack of aggression as France quandered a two-goal lead in a 3-2 friendly home defeat by Colombia on Friday.

Les Bleus opened a 2-0 advantage through Olivier Giroud and Thomas Lemar before losing their composure at the Stade de France, less than three months before the World Cup in Russia.

Luis Muriel, Radamel Falcao and Juan Quintero scored for Colombia, who were the more determined side in an entertaining encounter.

"We suffered a lot. They were more aggressive, and we failed to put speed in our game," said France coach Deschamps. "We had a great opening first half hour then Colombia gave us a lesson of aggressiveness and we sometimes were complacent.

"I can't be happy. We failed to be up to high-level standards in the second half.

"As far as willpower and determination are concerned, we were behind them tonight."

Centre-back Raphael Varane echoed his coach's point of view.

NO EXCUSES

As far as willpower and determination are concerned, we were behind them tonight.

DIDIER DESCHAMPS, France coach, on why Colombia were deserving winners following his side's 3-2 defeat.

"We lacked concentration after a good start," the Real Madrid defender said. "This is the kind of game we need to improve, we need to learn from our mistakes."

Colombia star James Rodriguez, who had two assists, challenged his team-mates to build on the victory.

"It was a good win. France are a tough opponent. They're among the options for the World Cup," the Bayern Munich forward told Gol Caracol. "We can't get carried away. We've still got a lot missing. It's important to be good in June. But it's a good victory."

Monaco striker Falcao agreed, saying: "The result is what we were looking for. It's historic. It's the first time we've beaten France here.

"It's important for us because we are consolidating ourselves, but we have to think it's nothing. We have to keep going with a lot of balance, because the World Cup is the goal."

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on March 25, 2018, with the headline 'Deschamps slams lacklustre France'. Print Edition | Subscribe