Franck Ribery, who missed Bayern Munich’s Bundesliga opener last weekend due to injury, could make an appearance for France in their World Cup qualifier against the Faroe Islands here on Wednesday.
France coach Raymond Domenech said on the eve of the Group Seven fixture that he was prepared to deploy the playmaker in some capacity even though Bayern coach Louis Van Gaal initially only allowed Ribery to make the trip on the condition that he wasn’t called to play.
“Franck is ready to play part of the game,” Domenech insisted here on Tuesday about the player who is recovering from a left knee problem.
The French boss added: “I had Van Gaal on the phone, we are in agreement that we have to return him (Ribery) in the best condition.
“He could play, if needed, for 15 to 20 minutes, like that he’ll get ready for Bayern’s match on Saturday, that’s part of our agreement, but we won’t necessarily ask him to play unless there’s a problem.”
Van Gaal had stated last Friday that Ribery would not be playing against the Faroe Islands, insisting that he was only allowing him to join up with the national squad “for a change of scenery”.
Switching to Thierry Henry Domenech said he had been aware for some time that the Barcelona striker may not be fit enough to join them for this trip to the North Atlantic island.
Henry was ruled out Monday with his club Barcelona revealing he was suffering from an Achilles problem.
“We’ve known for a few weeks that he wasn’t right but was continuing to play.. after talking to him we thought it wasn’t worth him coming to us to have his injury checked.
“It’s best that he rests, we’ll need him in September and October. I have confidence in ‘Titi’, the France team is his permanent dream.”
In Henry and regular captain Patrick Vieira’s absence the skipper’s armband will be worn by Arsenal’s William Gallas.
France need a win from Wednesday’s qualifier to close the gap with Group Seven leaders Serbia, who enjoy an eight-point cushion although the Serbs have played two more games.
“The three points are essential,” conceded Gallas.
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