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Deschamps: Ribery holds the key

Didier Deschamps believes Franck Ribery could prove to be France’s match winner in Tuesday’s World Cup qualifier against Spain.

France can take a big step toward qualification for next year’s tournament if they bag the three points against the reigning world champions, and the 44-year-old believes the Bayern Munich winger will play a key role in the crucial Group I clash.

“Ribery is a player capable of making the difference any time,” the France coach said at a press conference.

Deschamps then went on to discuss the situation of Karim Benzema, who has been heavily criticised recently for his goal drought for the national side.

“I won’t say if he’ll play on Tuesday or not, but I know his qualities well.”

The former Olympique de Marseille boss also had his say on the absence of Jordi Alba for Spain, and believes the left-back’s injury could prove to be a problem for Spain.

“It’s a big loss for them. (Nacho) Monreal is a high-quality player, but he isn’t at the same level as Alba.”

France hold a two-point lead over Spain at the top of Group I.

Tue 26 March, 2013
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