T The pursuit of harmony has been the cornerstone of Didier Deschamps. Reign as ruler of France. The 1998 World Cup-winning captain has repeatedly sought to become a World Cup-winning coach, not by choosing the best players, but by creating a squad defined by the lack of unity and cliques and clashing egos. That's why Karim Benzema's men's party 2018 for 26 – Euros was so amazing in the cold after nearly six years. Deschamps' unusually bold decision could destabilize everything he had worked so hard to achieve.
Deschamps knows more than most of the value of a great atmosphere. In the last decades, French society has regularly been divided along racial or religious lines. But his side of captain 1998 - often referred to as "black, white, beur" or "black, white, Arab" - brought together a fissured society, representing all of France. "It wasn't about your religion or the color of your skin, we didn't care," Zinedine Zidane later said. "We were just together and enjoyed the moment."
In contrast, Raymond Domenech learned that the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, how quickly a French team can be destabilized by conflicting egos. Various scenes - Patrice Evra confronts assistant coach Robert Duverne; The squad hidden in the team bus to support Nicolas Anelka after his discussion with Domenech; While the brash-looking coach himself read a team statement condemning the French officials - it was a national disgrace as the team came out of the tournament without a win.
Deschamps' 2012, the troublesome effects gradually faded away. The tactic of putting harmony above everything unquestionably worked. France was world champion and far from winning the Euro 2016. Benzema was absent in either tournament after the infamous Mathieu Valbuena “sex tape” scandal swallowed up the squad and further highlighted the divisions between the players.
His return means a striking confession - I need Deschamps and Benzema of France. And it is perhaps even more surprising that, despite Deschamps' success so far, he risked the unity of his camp. "We met, talked for a long time, then I thought a lot and made this decision," Deschamps said. I needed this conversation. He needed this conversation. As the national team boss, I have always looked beyond my personal situation. My responsibility is important. Bigger than me. "
One L'Équipe journalist Some players in the camp "frantically excited" over Benzema's call will do well to avoid a collision with the incumbent center striker Olivier Giroud. Compared to Giroud last year, Benzema said: "Don't confuse Formula 1 with karting and I'm fine."
Meanwhile, the scandal of the sex tape is still going on. Benzema. Its legal status has deteriorated over time. He will appear in court in October for allegedly mediating between a group of blackmails and Valbuena and pressuring his former teammate to pay off those who blackmailed him. After the scandal, Benzema accused Deschamps of "submission under the pressure of a racist part of France" by not choosing him.
Just because he's back. The team does not necessarily mean that it will start. No, 19 shirts could be a sign that Giroud will remain first choice. Deschamps remained timid in his team selection. “They played together before,” he thought. “They don't actually get in each other's way. Giroud has been struggling with his club since February. This is real." While Giroud has been marginalized since Thomas Tuchel's arrival at Chelsea, every goal in Premier League and Champions League minutes this season is stronger than Benzema's goal rate in every minute in La Liga and Europe. Giroud's international record is also better.
However, Benzema's quality will be hard to ignore after perhaps the best season of his career. It would be odd to exclude him from the initial XI, after the rage and the risks taken in bringing it back. However, Giroud embodies Deschamps' philosophy. A functional, flexible player who put his team and colleagues first, his relentless puppet run and counter pressure created time and space for Antoine Griezmann and Kylian Mbappé as France won the World Cup.
Benzema admitted as much as himself: “His style of play suits the French national team very well. It works because it's there, that's the only reason. Good because there are players who are fast like Mbappé or Griezmann and play on the channels and revolve around the middle forward. On top, it puts emphasis on defense, which allows the other two to move and show a lot. It blocks and it works. It won't be great, it won't do anything great, but it has something of its own. "
Benzema is the same role that Madrid perfected to support Cristiano Ronaldo, for whom Madrid won a hat-trick in their Champions League championship, which is a talisman for the Club despite being Real Madrid's only reliable target source in recent seasons. It could do the same for France.
As Deschamps suggested, he could deploy the two together in the asymmetrical 4-2-3-1 he used in Russia. Benzema has such a devastating effect in partnership with Giroud in their 5-2 win over the 2014 World Cup, Switzerland. 33, but this seems unlikely. While Griezmann, Mbappé and Benzema's front three are an exciting offer - he could free Paul Pogba in a possible 4-3-3 midfield - he may have to win Benzema's place. His participation with only two warm-up friends can only be reinforced by assuming that the club form continues deep into the tournament.
Although Deschamps agreed “ the list a year ago would not be the one i have today " his squad remains perhaps the strongest and deepest team in the tournament. While nine world champions have been kidnapped, Deschamps' first choice. Although their performances have been shaky in recent months, Presnel Kimpembe will begin as Raphaël Varane's defensive partner, with Sevilla's defender Jules Koundé and Kurt Zouma in tow. Manchester City's Aymeric Laporte was again ignored, but will almost certainly play in the Spanish tournament.
Anthony Martial does not exist either, because "his situation does not allow it" meant that Deschamps, Houssem Aouar and Eduardo Camavinga's recent bad club form were both neglected. 2018 has made a full squad this time and can be used to the left of Deschamps unbalanced 4-2-3-1, Matuidi's international career ended after joining MLS team Inter Miami. Moussa Sissoko, a Deschamps' favorite and a key figure in achieving team unity, was again on the roster despite the lack of recent game time for Tottenham.
Benzema's return could be an inspiring move from Deschamps. Much of the group's 2010 incident and blackmail scandals are now erased from memory, old divisions may simply be gone. Mbappé immediately tweeted his support to Benzema, and Giroud reportedly did not object. Varane, the fellow veteran and Madrid teammate, will be a ready confidant for Benzema. This is a risk, but in an open tournament, Benzema's F1 quality might be enough to secure pole position to ensure France's favorite tournament turns into victory on 10 July.