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Payet performance thrills Deschamps

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 26 Mar 2016

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France boss Didier Deschamps praised the performance of Dimitri Payet after their dramatic 3-2 win over Netherlands in Amsterdam on Friday.

The West Ham playmaker produced an eye-catching display in what was his first international appearance in nine months. He hit the post with a second-half shot and created six chances – more than double any other player on the pitch as well as having the most touches (89) of either side.

It was Antoine Griezmann, Olivier Giroud and Blaise Matuidi who scored the goals for France as they recorded a sixth victory in seven games, with their hosting duties at Euro 2016 getting closer, but Payet, 28, still did enough to earn positive words from his head coach.

“He was very good,” Deschamps was quoted as saying by L’Equipe.

“He responded well whenever he had to touch the ball. He had an enormous quality on set pieces and made a lot of effort. 

“He confirmed with us what he has been doing with his club – he is in top form.”

Deschamps was relieved to come out of the match with a victory, but rued his team losing their two-goal half-time lead, with captain Matuidi’s winner coming with only three minutes remaining.

“The first Dutch goal [by Luuk de Jong] was scored with a hand but we lacked concentration on the second goal and we must avoid that,” he said.

“We went out and played a very good first half, but the second was worse. We ended up snatching victory and the scenario was favourable to us, but we must be more focused. 

“We controlled the match and it could still have ended 2-2. We had seven or eight chances and must be able to manage the game better than that.” 

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