[VIDEO] Coupe du monde de rugby 2023 : décryptage de l’insolente sérénité des Bleus

Décryptage de la confiance française dégagée depuis le début du mandat de Fabien Galthié, encore illustrée par la performance contre les All Blacks ce vendredi (27-13).

She is insolent. Almost as much as that student at the back of the class who doesn’t do anything, answers the teacher, but always comes out with a 15/20. The confidence exuded by these Blues is enough to drive one crazy. The All Blacks did everything to disturb the French minds, offering a sensational Kapa o Pungo, scoring right at the beginning of the first and second halves, just to shake them up a little bit.

The calmness of the French team remains unshaken. In fact, Fabien Galthié had kept his inspirations from beyond the rugby world a secret. The coach has borrowed François Mitterrand’s doctrine from his 1981 presidential campaign – « The Quiet Strength » – and turned it into the creed of his players. Once again, after the France-All Blacks match, the feeling that nothing can faze Dupont’s squad was evident to their hapless opponents. The impassive face of the French captain? Well, it’s like that but on a team scale.

On an average game, we score 30 points.

Where does this serenity come from? « I think the victories have built it, » says scrum-half Maxime Lucu. « That, plus all the work we do during the week. » A behind-the-scenes work that translates into the weekend on the field. « The international level is like that. Strategy is crucial. There is a lot of work on analyzing the opponent, our game. It may seem tedious at times, but we realize that it works. For example, we saw that the Blacks had some weaknesses. We insisted on that and it worked, » adds the Bordeaux player.

Respecting the strategy and game plan in all circumstances is important. However, humans are still human, as they say. If someone were to concede a try after 1’32 » (a record in the World Cup) in front of 80,000 impatient supporters, the average person (or the French?) would surely need a few minutes to recover from the blow. But Galthié’s men didn’t. « If we had panicked, it could have been a real trap of a match. Coming together, staying calm, saying simple things to each other allowed us to score again immediately and quickly reverse the momentum. We didn’t panic. Also, being one point ahead at halftime (9-8) without playing very well, we thought to ourselves: ‘Sure, what we’re doing isn’t great, but we’re still in the lead.' »

Oh yes, that’s the hidden side of French insolence. « On a rather average match from our side, we scored 30 points, which is quite good, » Antoine Dupont boldly states. Just a reminder, it was the All Blacks on Friday night at the Stade de France. The team that had never lost a pool match in its history until this weekend.

This is the major lesson from the French team’s entry into the World Cup. The enthusiasm did not weaken their collective strength. A calm strength.

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