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France ready for test against Germany

CCTV.com

07-04-2014 09:14 BJT

Full coverage: World Cup 2014

The first quarter-final match on Friday is a marquee showdown between European heavyweights in Rio as Germany face France. The Germans have been criticized for their play of late as they barely snuck by underdogs Algeria to reach the Round of 8 needing extra time to earn a 2-1 win. 

Under coach Didier Deschamps, France has been unrecognizable from the team that self destructed in South Africa four years ago under Laurent Blanc.

Under coach Didier Deschamps (C), France has been unrecognizable from the team that self destructed in South Africa four years ago under Laurent Blanc.

Assistant coach Andreas Koepke says he understands where the concern is coming from but also urged those taking Germany to task to look at the bigger picture. 

"There are such matches in tournaments. Even in 1990 when we won the title. People always think that we just marched through the tournament and beat every opponent just like that. But we have had those mediocre games that were really close." Andreas Koepke said, "Maybe you can ask Franz Beckenbauer about his kick against the barrel full of ice cubes and we even had advanced in that situation. So there are such matches. But we are also aware that we have to improve and we will improve. And I am confident that we will play a really good game in Rio. We are looking forward to Rio and want to stay in the tournament as long as possible." 

Under coach Didier Deschamps, France has been unrecognizable from the team that self destructed in South Africa four years ago under Laurent Blanc. Their play in Brazil has French fans dreaming of their first World Cup title since Les Bleus won it all on home soil back in 1998. 

The team has heard the criticism that has been thrown Germany's way but aren't putting too much stock into it as they know what their opponents are capable of. 

"I would rather talk about Germany's qualities, as a matter of respect for them. They are a very strong team in all aspects of the game." Blaise Matuidi, France midfielder said, "They have a very good goalkeeper, he might even be number one today. They have good midfielders who like keeping the ball, they are good at relaunching the game from behind, they use the sides of the pitch as well. It is a rather homogenous team, with a great striker who is truly making a big impression in this World Cup, just like he did in 2010."

The first quarter-final match on Friday is a marquee showdown between European heavyweights in Rio as Germany face France.

The first quarter-final match on Friday is a marquee showdown between European heavyweights in Rio as Germany face France.

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