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Rugby World Cup: “I am responsible for everything but I regret nothing”, assumes Fabien Galthié

In a long interview given to Midi Olympique, the coach of the French XV, among other things, returned to the terrible disillusionment of the elimination of the Blues in the quarter-final of the World Cup against South Africa.

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Rugby World Cup: “I am responsible for everything but I regret nothing”, assumes Fabien Galthié

In a long interview given to Midi Olympique, the coach of the French XV, among other things, returned to the terrible disillusionment of the elimination of the Blues in the quarter-final of the World Cup against South Africa. Asked about the criticisms, in particular that of Richard Dourthe ("he takes people for idiots"), following his debriefing based on the data which showed that his team should have won, Fabien Galthié assured that he assumed this failure.

“I don’t mind if people make fun of me. I am going very well. I did what seemed essential to me. (…) When I hear my friends, those with whom I played, who call me the philosopher, they have the right to do so. But be careful, when they do it, they also criticize the members of my staff, the players and, ultimately, the French team. We are one. And we fully accept defeat, rest assured. (…) I am responsible for everything but I regret nothing. The result of these words will be the team composition for Ireland. Which should therefore be very close to the one lined up during this quarter-final.

The coach also refuted the hypothesis of a second mandate more difficult than his first four years at the head of the Blues. “The first one was never easy. When we took the French team, there were 35% victories over the past ten years. When I arrived, people would tap me on the shoulder and say, “Good luck, Fabien.” Then six months later, I was told: “Olala, what an incredible squad! And this golden generation!” Maybe… But the method, then? We have always strived to unite, to bring together. Now, we want to go further: we go beyond the framework of rugby and we want to inspire a nation. The players know it. (…) We will prepare each match with passion, to win the match and continue our mission.”

He assures that his team, his staff and himself recovered from the “traumatic shock” that was this elimination in the quarter-finals. That he questioned his motivation to continue the adventure, a question he also asked everyone interested. “I went through a period of strong introspection. I then asked myself and also asked each of the members of my staff, and the leaders of the selection, these three questions: 1) Do you still have the motivation? 2) Do you still have leadership? 3) Do you still have the skill? We collectively answered in the affirmative. From then on, we will continue with the full strength necessary.

See you on Friday February 2 for the opening match of the 2024 edition of the Six Nations Tournament. An opening shock, at the Vélodrome stadium in Marseille, against the other big disappointment of the World Cup, Ireland, defending champion with their Grand Slam completed last year.

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