The main France and Ukraine drew 1 everywhere this Wednesday night for this first game of the World 2022 qualifying campaign.
The last three France-Ukraine were separate games. Also historically. In November 2013, after a disastrous game in the first leg in Kiev (2-0), the Blues had almost never seen the World Cup in Brazil if Mamadou Sakho, inhabited in 1998 by the ghost of Lilian Thuram against Croatia, hadn’t dragged his shin scored a decisive double (3-0 win). The center-back’s wavering celebration is still on everyone’s lips. A comeback that finally heralded the Didier Deschamps era with the blues began in 2012.
Read also: The notes of the blues against Ukraine: Coman in legs, unfortunate Kimpembe
Seven years later, in October 2020, there is nothing to see. France are the reigning world champions, favorites for the euro and atomize Andrei Shevchenko’s men 7-1, led by Olivier Giroud from the big evenings. The former Montpellier, captain of his 100th selection, scored his 41st and 42nd goals, beating icon Michel Platini at the top of the scorers list. “DD” even offered the luxury of founding young people (Camavinga, Upamecano, Aouar).
Solid Ukrainian block
Well, last night this France-Ukraine did not do justice to its predecessors. For Deschamps, however, there was no question of conducting tests, but rather sending the heavy artillery to begin this qualifying phase for the World Cup in Qatar in 2022 (November 18 – December 16). Opposite, Ukraine, hardly more aggressively inspired than six months earlier, preferred to cement the defensive block with five players in order to muzzle the mopeds Coman and Mbappé. It was also the Bayern Munich striker who set off the first fireworks on his right side, often assisted by Benjamin Pavard.
A jewel and then the time has come
A 100% Bavarian right side, on which Hugo Lloris’s teammates insisted very much and which made it possible for Antoine Griezmann to blast the yellow lock (1-0, 19) with a splendid rolling of the left foot in the small opposite net of a helpless Bushchan . A jewel. The 34th goal of the Barcelona career in blue, along with David Trézeguet in the top scorer list.
In the first period the French tried, provoking, without ever creating clear chances, except for those of Olivier Giroud in the first period. The Chelsea striker even missed the inevitable (11) on a Hernandez caviar and then saw his head pass just over a center of Pavard (32).
The following ? Little. Boredom itself. The meeting was livelier than the flights of the offensive armada of the Blues, the missed passes, centers in the void, or amorphous attacks unusual for players of this caliber. For their part, the Ukrainians implemented their plan perfectly. That the “Grizou” gang never managed to outsmart. Can, must, do better.