2010 FIFA World Cup: Malouda and Toulalan Are Key in Opener for French

Ieuan BeynonCorrespondent IIIMarch 18, 2017

Michael Steele/Getty Images

When France opens their World Cup campaign in a couple of hours, the world will be wondering which French team will turn up.

The Uruguayans will be hoping that the team is still in disarray. Reports have emerged in recent days claiming that there has been a player revolt in the run up to the game.

The French, despite their poor form in the run-up to the tournament being terrible, are more than capable of turning on the style and have the individual talent to blow sides away.

If the French fail in this Group A match, the finger will ultimately be pointed at eccentric Coach Raymond Domenech.

The superstar players realise this, and this why it will not be the likes of Henry, Anelka, Ribery, and Gourcuff who steer the side past the hard-working South American,  but rather the likes of Jeremy Toulalan and Florent Malouda who will stand up and be counted for. Players who will give their all are those who will drive the team in this time of crisis and uncertainty.

Malouda is coming off his most impressive season to date with Chelsea and will be full of confidence.

He doesn't get on with coach Domenech and has been public in his criticism of the coach in the past. But he has a new edge about this season, and his hard work and craft could provide the likes of Anelka and Gignac upfront with plenty of opportunities.

Toulalan, on the other hand, is much more defensive. He will sit and let the likes of Ribery and Gourcuff push forward and create openings.

A dogged player whose only weakness is a lack of place. But he is the ball winner in Les  Blues midfield. Arguably, he is France's most important player and vital in the tactical set up of the side.

He will need to be at his best against the Uruguayans, tracking back and helping the centre-backs deal with the likes of Diego Forlan and Luis Suarez.

This is the toughest game of the group for the 1998 winners, and if they can get a result, then they are in pole position to come out on top.

So which France will turn up?

All we know is that they are either going to be really good or really bad.


Malouda has been left out of the squad—strangest decision of the World Cup, WHY?