the new Blues of Galthié calibrate against England

Two men and a trophy: Fabien Galthié, his captain Charles Ollivon and the six nations cup.
Two men and a trophy: Fabien Galthié, his captain Charles Ollivon and the six nations cup. PETER CZIBORRA / Action Images via Reuters

Fabien Galthié was in rage. "It is not conceivable! When you lead 14-0 in Scotland, you can't lose. " In August 2019, the one who was not yet coach of the XV of France, but simple "Assistant like the others", had poorly digested the defeat of the French team in Edinburgh in preparation for the World Cup.

As he had anticipated, the World Cup in Japan extended the evil that has plagued the Blues for more than a year. Capable of signing the first periods of high flight, they had an unfortunate tendency to collapse in the second, like the quarterfinal lost to the Welsh (19-20), when they had led for a long time. "Inexplicable", for the new coach of the Blues, who makes his debut at the head of the XV of France, Sunday, February 2, against England.

"These young players have never been confronted with the intensity and physical violence with which we are going to play on Sunday", Eddie Jones, coach of XV de la Rose

Aborted in the fall due to the deadly typhoon Hagibis, which fell on October 12, 2019, on Japan, organizer of the World Cup, the long-awaited crunch will finally take place, to open the Six Nations Tournament. And if Fabien Galthié intends to take up the challenge of "Win games, quickly", his credo after years of black bread for the Blues, the technician and his staff must have settled this drop in speed became the hallmark of the team.

"Twelve to zero, seventeen to zero, twenty to three, fourteen to zero, seventeen to zero. " The new coach of the Blues list of memories the start of the last matches disputed by the XV of France, where the team "Showed skills and know-how allowing him to largely take over the opponent, he insists. But hey, you saw the scenario of the second periods … "

Patience, mastery and leaders to find

For former Blues winger Vincent Clerc, the explanation for these late game debacles lies in "A lack of patience, control and leaders". The second best test marker in the blue jersey judges that if "The French team does not lack talent, for lack of confidence, it tended to return to a less ambitious game" that flamboyednt French flair. "Instead of staying in the same strategy, we tended to want to replay immediately as a team with full confidence, continues Clerc. And we fell in our ways. "

Also read: Fabien Galthié outlines his roadmap at the head of the XV of France

Fabien Galthié, who imposed his paw on the French game since his arrival as assistant in the summer, notably in defense, and embarked the whole of the hexagonal Ovalie in his project – implying a group of 42 Blues by rallying, against 31 previously -, hears "Win games, not show strength". The new framework has emphasized "Development of mental stamina" of each player and on a "High intensity training". "It is very important at a high level where there is no respite, where the players have entered the red, and do not come out", insists the coach.

Thibault Giroud, his assistant responsible for physical preparation, completes: “When we lose our game a bit, our athleticism is more difficult to find. We prepare the players to be able to transfer their physical qualities to the game project. ”

A “high intensity” preparation

Are the “Galthié babies” – 24 years old and an average of six selections – ready, after a commando course carried out on the French Riviera placed under the sign of "High intensity"? The first game will offer some semblance of an answer.

The youth did not escape the eyes of England coach Eddie Jones. "The French have decided to leave for this Tournament without experience, said Australia’s vice world champion coach. They may be wrong, they may be right … "

Also read: The pilgrim Galthié preaches the blue faith in the France of the ovary

When he arrived at the head of the XV de la Rose in 2016, Jones had retained a broken frame at an international level by incorporating young people into it. "One thing is certain, we are going to put these young players to the test, they have never been confronted with the intensity and the physical violence with which we are going to play on Sunday. "

A bellicose speech that hardly surprises the Blues. Because if the French returned disappointed from Japan, England, it, ended its tournament by being crushed by the Springboks in the title match. "Knowing the English, I expect a huge reaction", anticipates pillar Jefferson Poirot.

Read also "No youthfulness" but a large renewal for the XV of France version Fabien Galthié

To prepare his flock for the impacts to come, the new front pack boss, William Servat, has developed a yoke head – the tool to prepare for closed melee – firmer than usual. "If you want to be strong, you have to practice hitting something very hard", justified the former international hooker. Hard, the meeting against the English promises to be. The second period of the French will be scrutinized. Sunday, in a crowded Stade de France, the crunch should detonate.

Six Nations Tournament, schedule

The matches of the Six Nations Men's Tournament are broadcast on France 2.

Saturday 1st February
3:15 p.m .: Wales-Italy (Millennium Stadium, Cardiff)
5:45 p.m .: Ireland-Scotland (Lansdowne Road Stadium, Dublin)
Sunday February 2
4 p.m .: France-England (Stade de France, Saint-Denis)

Saturday February 8
3:15 p.m .: Ireland-Wales (Lansdowne Road Stadium, Dublin)
5:45 p.m .: Scotland-England (Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh)
Sunday February 9
4 p.m .: France-Italy (Stade de France, Saint-Denis)

Saturday February 22
3.15 p.m .: Italy-Scotland (Olympic Stadium, Rome)
5:45 p.m .: Wales-France (Millennium Stadium, Cardiff)

Sunday February 23
4 p.m .: England-Ireland (Twickenham Stadium, London)

Saturday March 7
3:15 p.m .: Ireland-Italy (Lansdowne Road Stadium, Dublin)
5:45 p.m .: England-Wales (Twickenham Stadium, London)
Sunday March 8
4 p.m .: Scotland-France (Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh)

Saturday March 14
3:15 p.m .: Wales-Scotland (Millennium Stadium, Cardiff)
5.45 p.m .: Italy-England (Olympic Stadium, Rome)
9 p.m .: France-Ireland (Stade de France, Saint-Denis)

Interactive calendar, of the women's tournament and under 20 years old on


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