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Blues: a return thwarted by injuries and the Mbappé file

Having moved the World Cup to autumn (November 20-December 18) has an impact on the calendar: the usual pre-tournament preparation camp goes by the wayside and the September matches against Austria on Thursday and in Denmark Sunday serve as a final trial run for the band of Didier Deschamps.

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Blues: a return thwarted by injuries and the Mbappé file

Having moved the World Cup to autumn (November 20-December 18) has an impact on the calendar: the usual pre-tournament preparation camp goes by the wayside and the September matches against Austria on Thursday and in Denmark Sunday serve as a final trial run for the band of Didier Deschamps.

But the boss of the reigning world champions is drowned in a rain of absences. Captain Hugo Lloris (right thigh injury) and left-back Theo Hernandez (right thigh tear), replaced by novice Alban Lafont and regular Lucas Digne, added to an already long list.

In addition to Paul Pogba, convalescing after his right knee operation on September 5, other indestructible players are missing, such as Presnel Kimpembe, Lucas Hernandez, N'Golo Kanté, Kingsley Coman, Karim Benzema and Adrien Rabiot.

- Rookies and ghosts -

Without this cascade of absences, the Monegasques Benoît Badiashile and Youssouf Fofana would probably not have been invited to the Château de Clairefontaine on Monday.

"I was quite surprised to be selected, I did not necessarily expect it. When you are selected for the last list before the World Cup, you can necessarily have ambitions and hope to participate," said Badiashile on Monday, who numerically supplements Kimpembe and Hernandez, left-handed central defenders like him.

His teammate Fofana has grilled the politeness of circles already capped and finds his former Monegasque partner Aurélien Tchouaméni, now at Real Madrid.

But the newcomer with the most to gain will undoubtedly be Randal Kolo Muani. "He brings presence, depth, with good efficiency, a lot of qualities", noted Deschamps about the new center forward of Eintracht Frankfurt.

Three "Spaniards" return to Clairefontaine after a long absence: Ousmane Dembélé, who left Euro-2021 on injury, and has been shining for several months at Barça, Ferland Mendy, no longer seen since March 2021, and Eduardo Camavinga, two years after his last selection, now have the hope of getting on the plane for Doha.

For Olivier Giroud, the September window offers only a limited opening to the World Cup. His recall is due, as in March, to Karim Benzema's package. However, combining the two is not an option for Deschamps: Giroud (112 caps, 48 ​​goals), holder of the 2018 World Cup, cannot become a simple understudy who is "content with crumbs", repeated the coach to Téléfoot .

- Image - 

Kylian Mbappé, dissatisfied with the management of the collective image rights of the players of the France team, relaunched the debate by announcing, in a press release, that he would not take part in a marketing operation planned for Tuesday at Clairefontaine.

The star striker and his representatives "deeply regret that no agreement could, as requested, be reached before the World Cup" on this subject, which was already controversial in March.

The president of the FFF Noël Le Graët, who had warned in recent months that he did not intend to renegotiate the charter governing these rights before the World Cup, came to Clairefontaine to talk to the players after their first training session.

In the evening, the federation announced that it was committed "to revise, as soon as possible, the convention inherent in the rights to the image which binds it to its players in selection".

"The FFF is delighted to work on the outlines of a new agreement which will enable it to ensure its interests while taking into consideration the concerns and legitimate convictions unanimously expressed by its players", she adds in a press release broadcast to the following, she specifies, "conclusive exchanges" between President Le Graët, "executives of the France team", Didier Deschamps and a marketing manager.

- Collective issues -

France, holders of the title forfeited in the League of Nations, completely missed in June (two defeats, two draws) and must avoid new missteps against Austria at the Stade de France and in Copenhagen against Denmark, under penalty of suffering an undignified relegation to the second division.

Especially since finishing at the bottom of the group would deprive France of seeded status for qualifying for Euro-2024...

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