By James Agberebi
Captain Hugo Lloris says he and his French teammates are excited about facing Argentina in the round of 16 of the Russia 2018 FIFA World Cup on Saturday in Kazan.
Argentina scraped through to the knockout stage following a dramatic 2-1 victory over Nigeria in their last group match, finishing as runners-up to Croatia.
France, came top of Group C after two wins and a draw ending the group stage with seven points.
“There has been a lot of excitement (in the French camp), because Argentina are a major contender, with great players and many supporters in the stadium. It is going to be a great match and we hope to answer the call to continue with our (World Cup) adventure,” Lloris said at a press conference, broadcast by FIFATV.
Lloris rejected suggestions Argentina were a one-man team, positing the whole team is a threat.
“There is so much expectation around Messi, which I think is normal, but still I think the Argentina team has a lot to show.
“They have had difficult times and still have been able to qualify. I am sure they will feel like going much further in the competition, they have won the World Cup before.
“This is going to be a big match, and a difficult one, we are going to have to step up our level.”
He however pointed out that France also have their own potent threat in Atletico Madrid forward Antoine Griezmann.
He said: “Antoine is one of the top players at this World Cup, has done things in a major European competition. He has made a lot of effort, is completely focused.”