Chris Coleman believes facing France could be the perfect tonic for a Wales squad still smarting from their failure to reach the World Cup play-offs.
Friday’s game in Paris will be Wales’ first outing since the 1-0 home defeat to the Republic of Ireland on October 9, a result that saw their opponents secure second place behind Serbia in Group D.
Coleman understands there will be plenty of envious
glances towards the Republic of Ireland when they face Denmark in the first leg of their play-off on Saturday.
But, instead of taking part in a competitive fixture, Wales have to settle for a friendly against a nation they so nearly faced in the Euro 2016 final.
“If there was any hangover, then this game is the perfect remedy,” Coleman told the media.
“It was absolute devastation losing that last game and the problem we had with it was that we couldn’t make up for it, it was done. It was harsh for us.
“We’re looking at other international teams playing in the play-offs where we wanted to be so, of course, we’re jealous of that.
“There’s no talk among us about didn’t we do well to only lose one game in 10. All we think about is disappointment, not reaching our goal.
“We’re still hurting. That hurt will last a long time I would imagine.”
— Wales (@FAWales) November 9, 2017
Wales have only beaten France once in four previous meetings – recording a 1-0 triumph in Toulouse in 1982 – but Coleman intends to field a strong XI in the hope of causing another upset.
However, the former Fulham manager, whose current contract with the Welsh FA runs out at the end of the month, has confirmed he will make changes for next Tuesday’s clash with Panama in Cardiff.
“France are a very good team. It’s a tough game of course, but we’ve faced tough teams before,” Coleman added.
“Tomorrow night’s team will be different to Tuesday, but it is an opportunity to give experience to the boys who need it.
“Tuesday is a home game and that will give players a chance to get minutes on the pitch. These are two different games but both games are just as important to us.”
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