Five-star France 'not relaxing yet'

21 June 2014 06:02

France coach Didier Deschamps insists he is not looking beyond the final Group F game against Ecuador despite the fact Les Bleus have won their opening two World Cup fixtures with ease.

Friday's 5-2 win over Switzerland all but secured safe passage into the knockout rounds as Olivier Giroud, Blaise Matuidi, Mathieu Valbuena, Karim Benzema and Moussa Sissoko all got on the scoresheet.

Benzema even missed a first-half penalty as France blew away their Swiss counterparts, who scored late consolation goals through Blerim Dzemaili and Granit Xhaka.

The victory means Deschamps has seen his side score eight goals in their two games but the former Marseille manager stopped short of labelling them as favourites.

"It was more than perfect before those two goals," he told TF1. "It's a beautiful evening and the result was ideal.

"If there is a draw between Honduras and Ecuador we are qualified. Otherwise, there will be a third game that will decide the final ranking.

"Are we are favourites? No, we have a group to get through. We were well prepared for these two games and we were effective. The knockout stages are a new competition."

Switzerland coach Ottmar Hitzfeld remains hopeful his side can progress through the group having won their opening game.

"It was a black day for the Swiss team," he told reporters.

"The two goals after a good first quarter of an hour killed us.

"We did not play to the level that we should have today. At 2-0, it became very hard for us, the French then logically exploited our mistakes to bring on more danger.

"Qualification is still within our reach, the team still had the merits because of the way we finished the game. Both goals from Dzemaili and Xhaka demonstrate that we are still alive in the competition.

"I want to say emphatically that qualification for the knockout stages is still within our reach. We have our destiny in our hands, we will analyse this match and bounce back - we lose together but we win together."

Source: PA