The defending World Cup champions looked the part in their opening match of the 2022 World Cup on Tuesday.
“World Cup Today” analysts Jimmy Conrad, Sacha Kljestan and Maurice Edu gave their three takeaways from the game.
1. Klejstan: France’s midfield is just fine
We talked about N’Golo Kante and Paul Pogba missing out on the tournament — both of those guys were key figures in 2018 for France’s World Cup run to the title. So, we had Adrien Rabiot, he was the guy who stepped up today with a goal and an assist on the first two goals in the first half and was really the difference. Aurélien Tchouaméni, the young defender from Real Madrid, we talked about him doing the dirty work and keeping it simple. We really didn’t see much from him tonight and usually, for a defensive midfielder, that’s a pretty good sign of a team that’s dominant. So, the midfield is just fine. We’ll see how they’ll progress as things go on.
2. Conrad: No World Cup hangover for France
They’re so good and they looked focused. Even though they’ve had some significant injuries with Paul Pogba being out, N’Golo Kante being out, Karim Benzema — the Ballon D’or winner — being out, they still found a way to show their quality. I believe Australia only had one shot on goal to [seven] for France. It was really a tremendous performance even though they went down a goal to start. I was really impressed with how they managed this game and how they really put their foot down on the gas pedal and tried to score more goals all the way until the end. After seeing this, I feel like they might be a contender to repeat, which hasn’t been done since Brazil did it in 1962.
France vs. Australia Highlights
Check out the key moments from France’s dominant 4-1 win over Australia on Tuesday!
3. Jones: France’s depth is scary
I look at this French team tactically and how they played, and they really pull teams apart. When you have Mbappe on one side and [Ousmane] Dembele on the other — the pace and when we were watching this game, there were times when we were just laughing from seeing how fast those players were. They could give the opponent a five-yard start and push it by them and run. When you’re able to pull the defense apart like that, that opens every other part of the field. I think opponents are going to have a very difficult time trying to shut down the various weapons that they have.
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