Didier Deschamps, the new France manager and former World Cup winning captain of France, thinks that Yohan Cabaye has turned into one of France’s best players for the way he’s played for France, and Didier would have you believe it has nothing to do with the great form he has shown since joining Newcastle United.
Yohan Cabaye – played in 1-1 draw tonight against Spain in Madrid
Maybe it’s just a coincidence that since he came to Newcastle, Yohan has improved big time and become possibly France’s best player – certainly he was their best player in the Euro 2012 in Poland and the Ukraine over the summer.
This is what the France manager told reporters before the France game in Madrid against Spain tonight:
“One of my favourite sayings is: ‘National team is above everything, you can play at the greatest clubs, but there is nothing stronger than winning with the shirt of your country.”
“I can give you an example – Yohan Cabaye. He didn’t change his status because he joined Newcastle, it is because he has been called into the French team and he has matched expectation.”
“Nowadays no one could imagine the French team without him. But why?” “You really believe people look very closely at his performances with Newcastle? No, he got his status with Les Bleus, thanks to his good work for the French team.”
It’s important that players who play well for their clubs also reproduce the same form for their countries, and some players, notably some big name English players, have not always done that.
Cabaye has played well for both Newcastle and France, and in tonight’s game in Madrid after Spain dominated in the first half and went ahead 1-0 through Sergio Ramos, and after Fabregas missed a first half penalty, France came back in the second half.
They were the better side in those final 45 minutes and three and a half minutes into added time, Arsenal’s new striker Giroud, who had come on as a sub for Karim Benzema, headed in the equalizer.
It’s a good job the time isn’t held rigidly in football, as Giroud scored 35 seconds past the three minutes of allotted time – but of course we are told it’s a minimum of three minutes.
And that’s the first time in 25 consecutive qualifying games that Spain have failed to win, and it was a goal at the death, but in truth France deserved the draw, after they came back in great style in the second half, with Cabaye playing his usual efficient role in midfield.
Oh yes – and he wasn’t injured.
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