Launched by its coronation in Moscow, in 2018, the blue train suddenly derailed one evening in June 2021 in Budapest in 8e final of the Euro against Switzerland (3-3, defeat on penalties). Since then, he hiccupped. The effect of the spectacular victory in October 2021 in the Nations League was negated by poor results (only one victory out of the six games played since June). Above all, coach Didier Deschamps has had to fight for several months with the disparate states of form and injuries of his executives. Hubs four years ago in Russia, Paul Pogba and N’Golo Kanté had to forfeit. Defender Presnel Kimpembe imitated them, his counterpart Raphaël Varane was on the verge of doing so. And the offensive trio that was so scary eighteen months ago questions. Antoine Griezmann struggles with the club. Karim Benzema, who has not played a full meeting since October 19, is hampered by muscle discomfort.
Seen from abroad, however, the Habs are still regarded as favorites. Because their coach, at the end of the contract, has already shown his ability to find the balance in a very short time. Because the new generation, symbolized by the former Girondin Aurélien Tchouaméni, today at Real Madrid, has already conquered major European clubs. Because they have in Kylian Mbappé an outstanding blaster, capable of blasting all defenses.
Their traditional European competitors do not have, above all, much more certainty. Queen of the Old Continent in July 2021, Italy did not qualify. Finalists at home, England have not taken off as expected and have not won any of their last six games. Over the period, Germany, which is stagnating, did little better (one victory). Spain remains fragile defensively; Belgium is aging. The most promising dynamic is Dutch: studded with talent, the Dutch, third in 2014, however have the bad habit of collapsing when they are expected. A boon for the South Americans, deprived of a world title since 2002?
This is obviously what Brazil and Argentina dream of. Still placed, but cracking in the last laps, the Auriverde, led by a Neymar on fire at Paris SG since August, seem to be the best armed today. But for, no doubt, Messi’s last chance to lift the trophy, Argentina has a major asset: solidity, often the hallmark of future winners. The spell puts her potentially on the road to the Blues from the round of 16, for a 2018 revenge at the same stage (4-3). A whole country is waiting for this.