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'France were in disarray four years ago but they look very impressive now' - CCFC World Cup Review

16 June 2014

Sky Blues Development Director Steve Waggott looks at France's start to their 2014 World Cup campaign...

France 3 Honduras 0

France may have only qualified through the play-offs but many will see them as contenders after this 3-0 win.

Steve Waggott – CCFC Development Director

The World Cup has got off to a cracking start – and this game was another absorbing and entertaining encounter.

France were in disarray at the South Africa World Cup and had only qualified this time around by beating Ukraine in the play-offs, but they looked very impressive in this game.

They dominated from first to last and, just as crucially to me, did not allow themselves to get too rattled by the physical approach of the Honduran team.

France seem to have a very good blend of ability, physical presence and, in the form of Karim Benzema, have a striker who looks bang on form.

All the big teams will have a player they look to – Argentina have Messi, Brazil have Neymar – and off the back of a good season with Real Madrid, Benzema could emerge as a real force as the tournament progresses.

Honduras were underdogs but their chances disappeared when Stoke’s Wilson Palacios fouled Paul Pogba to concede a penalty and earn himself a deserved red card.

There was the expected media fuss when goal line technology came into play for the second goal, but it seemed to operate perfectly well. The ball did not cross the line when it hit the inside of the post, but did when the Honduran keeper tried to keep it at the foot of the other post. And that is how the technology saw it.

As the old adage goes, you can only beat what is in front of you, and France did that convincingly enough, but they will face harder tests.

Performance rating: France 8 Honduras 5

Man of the Match: Benzema – World Cups often produce a stand-out striker and the French forward could emerge to be this year’s star.

Prospects: It is hard to say just how good France are from this display, but with Switzerland and Ecuador to come, they have to be odds on to get through. Honduras will have to change their approach if they are to stand a chance.


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