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Blanc demands defensive improvement

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 6 Jun 2012

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France coach Laurent Blanc believes his side still have work to do in defence after thrashing Estonia 4-0 on Tuesday.

Karim Benzema bagged a brace, while Franck Ribery and Jeremy Menez were also on target, as France completed their warm-up for Euro 2012 with the comfortable win in Le Mans.

However, while Blanc said the victory had been good for morale, he was concerned by his side’s susceptibility to Estonia’s counter-attacks.

“The match pleased me, so did the atmosphere, it’s been a while since we felt the whole crowd was behind us, like it was tonight. It was a great night of football,” Blanc said.

“Over the three matches we’ve performed very well in attack.

“In other areas a bit less so, (especially) in defence. I’m going to be clear about that. I’m not going to mince words.”

France will face England, Ukraine and Sweden in Group D at Euro 2012, with their opening match against Roy Hodgson’s men on June 11.

Blanc said his team needed to play simple football, particularly coming out of defence.

“What bothers me is that we play ourselves into trouble. In football and in sport in general, you have to keep things simple,” Blanc said.

“But we didn’t keep things simple in the first half. The defenders must realise that they have to be more rigorous, tougher, and to play more simply.”

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