a full-bodied League of Nations for the Blues, with Portugal and Croatia on the menu

Attention danger ! France will find opponents it knows well for the second edition of the League of Nations, organized in the fall. And the task looks difficult for the Blues of Didier Deschamps. As in Euro 2020, they will cross paths with the heavyweights of the European football scene, notably with Portugal and Croatia, according to the draw made on Tuesday in Amsterdam.

"Given the set, we knew there would be big opponents, reacted the coach of the France team. This competition is made for that too, it replaces the friendly matches that didn't have much interest. We’ll have some great games in the fall, a competition with goals, even if to be honest, it’s not totally in my brain at the moment. It’s no longer the matches of March and the Euro, of course. "

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The matches against Portugal and Croatia will have a sweet scent of revenge. As in the final of Euro 2016 at the Stade de France (1-0 defeat after extra time), and as in next June in Budapest at the Euro, the Blues will be opposed to the men of the Seleçao in the fall. Cristiano Ronaldo and his partners have certainly experienced great difficulties in qualifying for European competition, but they will remain as the first benchmark in the league table of the Nations. At home in June 2019, Fernando Santos' players won the first honorary trophy of this new competition by beating the Netherlands in the final (1-0).

"A difficult match"

One of the scarecrows in the draw, the Croatian vice-world champions, also make an appointment with the Blues. A year and a half after the World Cup final, won 4-2 by the French, Blues and Croats are on similar trajectories: both have only slightly trembled in their qualifications for the Euro, and have suffered before that a little backlash during the first edition of the League of Nations, the Blues falling against the Netherlands, the Croats against Spain and England. "It is not a revenge for the World Cup because it is a different competition. But it's still a difficult match ”, warns Croatian coach Zlatko Dalic.

In this group 3 of Ligue A, the Blues also inherited from Sweden, qualified for Euro 2020 without too many worries, and which remains on a victory against the French (2-1) in qualification for the last World Cup, Stockholm in 2017.

The four cadors will compete in round-trip matches between September and November. Beautiful posters, but few stakes, apart from the honorary title of winner of the competition awarded in June 2021, at the end of a final phase of four. Only a first group place will offer the Blues their ticket for this "Final Four", while in the event of a disappointing 4e instead, it will evolve into the second division, League B, during the third edition (2022-2023).

League of Nations: the calendar of the Blues

On the program of the Blues in group 3 of League A of the League of Nations (host cities to be determined):

  • Saturday September 5, 2020: Sweden-France (8:45 p.m.)
  • Tuesday September 8, 2020: France-Croatia (8:45 p.m.)
  • Friday October 9, 2020: France-Portugal (8:45 p.m.)
  • Monday October 12, 2020: Croatia-France (8:45 p.m.)
  • Thursday, November 12, 2020: Portugal-France (8:45 p.m.)
  • Sunday November 15, 2020: France-Sweden (8:45 p.m.)

And, in case of first place:

  • June 2 or 3, 2021: semi final
  • June 6, 2021: small final or final

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