Former France international Marcel Desailly has run the rule on the chances of some contenders in the 2018 FIFA World Cup and declared that England’s Three Lions are not capable of winning the trophy in Russia.
Writing in his column for British newspaper The Guardian, Desailly wrote about England’s chances thus: “Harry Kane saved England [against Tunisia] and I saw some good things in their performance. But you could tell there was a lack of experience and perhaps the lack of a leader on the technical side – I expected more from Dele Alli, for example. Let’s just say that I didn’t see anything to make me think England can become world champions.”
The 1998 World Cup chyampions with France was also critical of Brazil superstar Neymar who he claimed has been too selfish with the ball.
“Neymar gave off the impression he was playing by himself. Whenever the ball came to him he slowed the game down, irrespective of whether it was the right thing to do or not. Because he knows he has the talent to change games, you get the impression Neymar wants to be the one to do that something special. But he has to understand that it’s not like that at international level. He might be the greatest player but you have to think of the collective.
“You have to think of your teammates and play with them, using one-twos and triangles to move forward and make those differences. The one time he did that, down the left with Marcelo and Coutinho, brought about Brazil’s goal. But that was not enough.”
Desailly, who played in the great AC Milan sides of the 1990s, claimed France coach Didier Deschamps is in a quandry about where and how to play striker Olivier Giroud.
He said: “France, meanwhile, played a 4-3-3 to use the skills and pace of Kylian Mbappé and Ousmane Dembélé against Australia but once again we saw that when Olivier Giroud is not there, we miss him. When he came on we switched to 4-4-2 and looked better balanced, so now my friend Didier Deschamps has a tricky situation to resolve. Does he switch to a midfield two and let Antoine Griezmann play off Giroud? One thing’s for sure, France did not make good use of the ball and will have to do better than against Australia if we are to go far. For now, we know a win over Peru should see us through to the next round.”
The player, who was also on the 2000 European Championship-winning France team was also impressed with Spain whom he claimed showed they are tactically and physically ready for the World Cup.