“It’s a sporting failure, we are far from our goal”. In 2019, after an elimination from the World Cup at home in the quarter-finals against the soon-to-be-champion Americans, the tricolor coach Corinne Deacon summed up the end of her players’ career in a rather lapidary way. The formula could be used again on Wednesday July 27 after the exit of the French in the semi-finals of the Euro, beaten 2-1 by the Germans.
Because they had repeated it before the meeting, the Blue ones: to be for the first time in the last four of the European championship was only a stage. “The goal is only on the trophy”, hammered captain Wendie Renard. The girls were “confident”, as if the victory in the quarter-finals against the Netherlands (1-0 after extra time), finally breaking the glass ceiling of the Bleues who have been limited for too long at this stage of the competition, was worth a passport for the future. Except that the Germans had a perfectly thought out plan against the France team.
Under German rule
The German scarecrow, however, no longer really impressed the Blues. Even if the selection from across the Rhine could claim a unique track record in European women’s football, with 8 continental titles crunched out of 12, unchallenged domination from 1995 to 2013, and no less than 99 goals scored in this event , the best of Mannschaft, it was said, was a thing of the past. Perhaps this reputation as a generation one step below has piqued the pride of German women.
Because they are the ones who entered the field with the bit between their teeth, applied to put the Blues under pressure, closing all the spaces, immediately jumping on the ball carrier. The duels? Overall to the advantage of the Germans. Possession of the ball? Same. From this grip, the Blues could not get rid of, deprived of ammunition and therefore unable to sustain their traditional breakaways on the wings. That the Germans materialize this superiority with a superb volley from their inevitable striker Alexandra Popp was anything but an injustice. That the Blues managed to equalize just before half-time on an opportunistic shot from Kadidiatou Diani proved to be rather well paid, however.
“Good for the future”
After the break, the Blues certainly existed a little more, the Germans gradually loosening their grip. It prevents. It was the Germans, and again by the inevitable Alexandra Popp, who found the net. Les Bleues have not given up, but this ” state of mind “, much praised by Corinne Deacon after the success against the Netherlands, was not enough to overthrow a Germany “powerful, athletic and efficient”, recognized the coach after the match. Nothing to say: the Mannschaft deserves its final at Wembley against the English on Sunday July 31.
For the France team, the disappointment is commensurate with the ambition. “But we built thingswanted to positive Corinne Deacon. There is a solid base, a very friendly, hard-working group that doesn’t like to lose. So it’s good for the future “. The coach can look to the future more calmly than after the failure of the World Cup which opened the door to devastating settling of accounts with some executives of the Blues. By renewing its workforce and betting on the new generation, it has partly won its bet, leading Les Bleues to the last four.
The performance is undoubtedly sufficient for the coach to be renewed at the head of the Blue until the 2023 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. Still, the France team is still looking for its first international success, and this campaign in England has not raised considerable enthusiasm. Party postponed, no doubt, as the workforce of the Blue displays many promises. But part postponed anyway. And once again.