As the host nation, France go into this summer’s Championships with a lot of expectation – something that captain Hugo Lloris feels should be justified with a strong start against Romania.
Lloris reveals importance of a good start
In the pre-match news conference ahead of tomorrow’s curtain raiser, Lloris admitted there is “a lot of expectation” on the players, who understand the “importance” of the match itself, as well as how important it is for them to make a good start to proceedings.
“We’ve played friendlies for two years and there have been a lot of positives, but things start for real tomorrow.”
France one of the tournament favourites
The Tottenham goalkeeper, 29, is in line to win his 76th national cap ahead of tomorrow’s clash in Saint-Denis, and with top-quality players such as Juventus‘ Paul Pogba and Atlético Madrid forward Antoine Griezmann in the ranks, there is definitely reason to be optimistic about France’s chances of going all the way this summer.
Lloris said that for everyone [within the 23-man squad], it’s “the most important competition of their career.”
“As long as we have this spirit, the hunger to win tackles I have no doubts.”
With the aforementioned Romanians, Albania and Switzerland in Group A, the hosts will undoubtedly be expected to top their group – but underdogs love to spring surprises, especially in the major tournaments. If they’re able to progress into the knockout rounds, you’d assume the collective spirit from the nation would help encourage them for further success. He rejected the suggestion that France themselves are favourites – saying the team have “done nothing” and have failed to prove anything in comparison to both Germany and Spain.
“Playing on home soil gives us a little bit of an advantage, and we have to use it.”