The Blues advanced towards this semi-final against Morocco without two driving forces in their career. Upamecano and Rabiot unable to hold their place, Konaté and Fofana had to go to the front. Not enough to scare the Liverpool defender, once again impeccable.
They will however have left immense generosity in the last moments, in particular on this action saved in a totally improbable way by Jules Koundé, very happy to see the ball bounce on him on his line (90e+4). This time, the Blues hold a first clean sheet in this World Cup, having conceded a pawn in each outing since the start of the tournament. If the side trained in Bordeaux saved the day, this overall defensive performance owes a lot to Ibrahima Konaté, in the continuity of his first two matches during the pools.
The blow after Dayot Upamecano’s package, which has been particularly solid since the start of this World Cup, has finally passed more or less into the background despite Morocco’s bouts of fever. Excellent news, if by chance the Bavarian should not be handed over by the final on Sunday, to rub shoulders with Argentina. While the left lane suffered once again, like the quarter-final against England, the young Red never really trembled, even saving the homeland by cutting off a searing cross from Attiyat-Allah intended for En-Nesyri early in the second half.
Among the main questions – with the midfielder – before the competition for the Blues due to Presnel Kimpembe’s package, the left axial position is perfectly managed. “The two supposed to be able to hold this place, even if others can do it: Ibrahima Konaté and Dayot Upamecano” , said Didier Deschamps before the start of hostilities. To finally launch the two young men side by side to resist Australia, giving Raphaël Varane time to get back on his feet. Here are now these Tricolores qualified for the final by having aligned three different hinges, without collapsing. Despite a propensity to suffer for long moments of each encounter.
Can’t wait for Sunday?
An accomplishment for the man who made his national debut last June to make up for the numerous absences against Austria, then Croatia. Before waiting all fall to find out if he would be traveling to Qatar, the fault of several physical glitches which delayed the start of his season with Liverpool. Until the issue, on November 9, when the list of Didier Deschamps was announced. “It’s every kid’s dream, it makes me happyhe congratulated himself in the process to the Parisian. I was alone at home in Liverpool when the list was revealed – that’s my only regret – but we were in video with all my family. We were like crazy! »
His seventh selection could therefore be a World Cup final, in the very position where Samuel Umtiti had excelled four years ago in Russia. “It’s true that in my position, there are a lot of very good playershe presses again. Afterwards, be careful: with me, we’re not just going to bet on the nice little guy! But I imagine that Deschamps took into consideration the person I am, as well as the state of mind that I have and my level of performance. » Just like at the Reds for his first season, the kid from La Roquette was quick to establish himself as a safe bet in the selection. Of those that you can pull out of your sleeve to carry out any mission, even when it consists of stopping Lionel Messi in the last stage of his golden dream.
By Tom Binet