Highlights on Off The Ball

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Highlights on Off The Ball


France have too many injuries to feel good about their squad entering the World Cup

France have a lot of problems behind the scenes and in their squad ahead of the World Cup.

Phillippe Auclair joined The Football Show to discuss France and their lengthy injury list.

The World Cup is less than a week away.

It doesn't feel like it, but we are on the precipice of the biggest competition in World Football. Holders France begin their competition on Tuesday against Australia before facing Denmark and Tunisia in their group. Kylian Mbappe is back, but the foundation of the France squad has been decimated by injuries.

Paul Pogba and N'Golo Kante will miss the competition. As will Presnel Kimpembe. Karim Benzema is available for the World Cup, but not necessarily fit. He will play the competition with a knee injury.

That's one centre back, two central midfielders and the team's primary striker. The spine of France's team is aching.

Phillipe Auclair explained the situation to Joe Molloy.

"Didier Deschamps has been unable to call on a number of players he would normally make the basis of his team," Auclair said.

"It's a very strange atmosphere in the French camp and the French federation for the last few months. There is a feeling that we are coming to the end of a cycle, the Deschamps cycle which has been very successful. The Final of Euro 2016 and of course the World Cup title, the Nations League and so forth.

"But you get the feeling that there is a machine that is coming to the end of its cycle.

"When it comes to the team itself I think it's injuries. I think it's absolutely appalling. I don't know if you've got a list, I was trying to remember how many players are unavailable and will be unavailable for this World Cup.

"It's a very long list. I think it's long enough to give France a run for its money for the world title. So no, it's not looking good.

"It's not looking good at all."

Eddie Howe has no shame.


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Didier Deschamps France Kylian Mbappe Ngolo Kante Paul Pogba World Cup