- 1. Gignac, the leader
- 2. Thauvin, the artist
- 3. Savanier, the regulator
Difficult to remain insensitive to it. After twenty-five years of absence, the French men’s football team is back at the Olympic Games. And the combined presences of André-Pierre Gignac, Florian Thauvin and Téji Savanier obviously give particular relief to a selection which had to face a cascade of packages due to the refusal of French clubs to release their players. Smaller but ambitious, this France team will have to get out of a very tough hen with Mexico, Japan and South Africa. While there are still many uncertainties, there is no doubt that its leaders will put their hearts into work. It is their trademark.
“I chose André-Pierre for two reasons. First of all because he is someone who remains very successful in his field, who stays on very successful seasons, who is an attacker who is both a scorer and a point of fixation. But also for his personality, he is someone who brings people together, who brings good humor, who creates links. It is therefore no surprise that Sylvain Ripoll gave the armband to the one he saw start in the elite under the Lorient jersey, in 2006. At 35, five years after his strike on the post in the final of the l Euro against Portugal, André-Pierre Gignac is back in blue for an Olympic adventure which will mark the end of his international adventure. He has hardly left the choice to a Monterrey club which does not seem able to refuse him anything. “As soon as I spoke to him about it, he was hyper-packed,” confirms a coach who relies heavily on the psychological impact of the former striker of Toulouse and Marseille. “He’s a competitor, he knows what he wants and he takes everyone with him. “
Did the jersey of the Monterrey Tigers and the example of André-Pierre Gignac rub off on him? In any case, Florian Thauvin, whom we have often known as dazzling, sometimes indolent, has also shown himself to be “super excited” by the Olympic project. So, as part of the possible recourse to three players over twenty-three years old to frame the hopes of the previous generation, Sylvain Ripoll did not hesitate. “’Flo’, we don’t introduce him anymore. On a purely sporting level, we know his creative qualities. But beyond that, he’s someone who has a very interesting personality for a band. Capable of destabilizing the opposing defenses with his flashes, the former Marseillais will be the major offensive asset of a France team which will have only had three weeks to prepare and create a link. And who will therefore also have to rely on his individualities to force the decision. And also on set pieces, an exercise in which Florian Thauvin is able to excel.
“Téji (Savanier, Editor’s note), I really appreciate it. And I did not wait these last months to take an interest in it. He is a very complete player, who likes responsibilities, who has a dog in recovery, volume, but also a lot of finesse on the technical level. This is why Sylvain Ripoll did not hesitate to give the keys to the Olympic midfield to the Montpellier midfielder, who still couldn’t believe it last week. “To play the Olympic Games with the France team is a dream for me, an unimaginable chance. “A promotion that delighted the Brest coach Michel Der Zakarian, who had the player under his orders last year. “I’m very happy for him, he’s a charming boy, with an exceptional state of mind and superior technical quality. A boy capable of transcending himself once he sets foot on the lawn, as his former coach emphasizes. “He’s very calm in life and very impulsive on the pitch, he’s a winner. “For the child of the city of Gély, where the gypsy community of Montpellier lives, wearing the blue jersey represents” enormous pride “. That he intends to share.
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