Looking ahead to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, it is clear that a number of Didier Deschamps' preferred options for les Bleus will have reached maturity by that stage. That will likely give the former Juventus, Monaco and Marseille coach a strong squad that could compete for the title, assuming the individuals continue on their current trajectory.
One thing that has always undermined France when going into major international tournaments has been a lack of team spirit and a minimal if non-existent sense of unity.
Deschamps knows that les Bleus need to overcome this if they are ever to recognise their full potential on the international stage once again. To offset this, he has concentrated on selecting domestic-based players where possible given their familiarity with one another.
Add to that some troubled elements including Yann M'Vila, Samir Nasri and Andre-Pierre Gignac, and Deschamps' XI starts picking itself. With the likes of Yohan Cabaye unlikely to be able to hold down a regular starting position given injury, form issues, and the improving abilities of his Ligue 1-based competition, there arises some competition for places within the side.
That said, it isn't too much competition.
It seems Deschamps already has a firm idea of who figures in his plans even at this early stage, what will be most intriguing is if he perseveres with certain underperforming elements from France's foreign-based contingent.