2022 World Cup: the projects awaiting the Blues one year before the World Cup in Qatar

the essential Defense, pistons, deadlines: the France team has a little over a year to prepare for the defense of its title, in a little over a year.

After the feast, the desert. Since Saturday 13 November, and their orgy of goals against Kazakhstan at the Parc des Princes (8-0), the Blues have officially qualified for the World Cup 2022. This Tuesday 16, rather than shaking, they go with a light heart to Helsinki for a bonus match against Finland. The first in a year to prepare for the defense of their world championship title and the hunt for the third star in Qatar (21 November – 18 December). One year to rehearse and refine.

Draw, list: what deadlines?

A year is long and short at the same time. And that’s the whole paradox for the France team. For the first time in history, the qualified selections have one year to prepare. But they will only benefit from a large week of collective training before entering the competition since the championships will end no earlier than ten days before the opening match of the World Cup, on 21 November.

Data weighted by the number of gatherings by then. After the draw for the World Cup on April 1 in Doha, the Blues will meet three times, for a total of eight meetings. In June and September, the French team will dive back into a new edition of the League of Nations. Holding the title, she will know her opponents on 16 next December.

Above all, the hypothesis of a mini-tournament in Qatar emerges in March where it could come up against one or even two opponents in the air-conditioned stadiums of the Emirate. One way to take the pulse of the Gulf and test elements there before announcing the list of 23 for the World Cup, in October. The real starting point of the adventure.

Three-way defense, the system of tomorrow?

Switzerland had buried him, it was thought. It was forgetting the pragmatism of Didier Deschamps. Despite the sinking of the first half of the round of 16 of the Euro, the coach insisted with his system of three defenders and this 3-4-1-2.

Because it adapts to the strengths and weaknesses of opponents most often disposed in this way, like Belgium or Kazakhstan lately. But also because he wanted to place his Griezmann-Benzema-Mbappé attacking triangle in the best conditions. While reinventing a French team that has become permeable.

However, she did not solve all her defensive problems. And it will undoubtedly be one of the projects of this year: stabilizing a rearguard where apart from Varane, no one seems indecisive.

What a life in the wing?

The finding is clearer on the sides where the pistons have no doubt persuaded DD to persevere in this pattern. If Theo Hernandez squeaked defensively against Belgium or Spain, he also spoke about his qualities as a counter-attacker by being decisive, like his two assists on Saturday.

On the right, Pavard is a real defender, which with Deschamps is never trivial. But he successfully tested Coman (2 assists) on Saturday, a much more offensive solution. The coach “never does a one shot”, he recalled. He has one year to test this “option” against opposition from another level.

What space for new ones?

Lucas Hernandez in March 2018, Benzema in May or even Griezmann and Digne in March 2014: Didier Deschamps is not a coach at improvise but he sometimes surprises in the home stretch before a big competition. What will happen between now and next October and the list?

Between club changes, states of form and injuries, new faces could be invited. Nkunku, brilliant at Lepizig, or Saliba, solid at OM, are one of them. Undoubtedly much more than Clauss or Savanier, to the chagrin of Ligue 1 fans. Camavinga or Lemar, they have probably not said their last word. They have a year ahead of them. Short and long at the same time.

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