The coach is rather satisfied with the performance of his new France team. And is already looking forward to the final against England next Sunday at Twickenham.
At the Stade de France
What went well and not so well against Italy?
Fabien Galthié: The first victory, which was the goal of the week, with 20 minutes of collective training Wednesday morning and 21 minutes Wednesday afternoon for players who did not know each other. What worked were these five tries, this offensive bonus and a +31 gap, all of that is very positive. Our kicking good too, some of our efficient circuits. For next week, more than points for improvement, we will focus on a very specific event: facing the typical England team at Twickenham for a final. We are going to focus on that more than improving what we have done or not done.
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There is a lot of kicking on the French side. Was it a choice?
It is part of our organization. Our game plan is simple: find spaces behind the offensive curtain. We typed 47 times, with a good ratio: 86% quality. That’s enough to put a team in the right direction.
What did you think of the performance of Brice Dulin, back in the France team three years after his last selection?
He was excellent. In his precision with his left foot, his placement and his replacement. He was also very efficient in aerial duels, very present as a ball carrier with several crossings, sometimes decisive. He had a very good game.
“We cannot ask them to go back and forth”
Is it a pride to see that the team changes but continues to win?
Each time, it’s a challenge to manage to build a team in such a short time. It’s interesting, it forces us to work on our method, on the analytical part and the sensory part. We manage to go quickly. But it stops there. The word pride is not the right word. Our goal is to become a major nation again, to quickly win matches and titles. For this, we have a roadmap, a methodology that requires a lot of commitment from the players. This is the price for being efficient quickly, in a context, an environment, not always easy, between the overloaded schedule and institutions (Federation and League, Editor’s note) not always in phase. We have to deal with it, adapt, move forward. For now, we are getting there and we are satisfied.
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How do you approach the final against England next Sunday at Twickenham?
We will face a nation, which has lost only one match this year, against us, and only one last year, in the World Cup final (they also lost against Wales in the Tournament, Editor’s note). We will face a nation which loses little, which will align its best elements, which has a lot of collective experience. We will face the best team in the world at the moment since South Africa is not playing …
Are you going to try to negotiate the return of your executives for this final?
No ! When you switch, you have to totally switch and invest. You can’t ask the players to come out and come back. When the agreement on the 3 match sheets was concluded, we decided that we would do the first three matches with the same team, then that they would come out of the bubble and that we would rebuild a team for the last three matches. . It’s too difficult to go back to another organization, especially in clubs where it has nothing to do. We cannot ask them to go back and forth. The team that played tonight will show up at Twickenham, except Baptiste (Serin) and Teddy (Thomas) (they in turn reached the limit of 3 match sheets, Editor’s note). But, for the rest, we will stay like that.