The XV of France in training at Marcoussis, February 18, 2020. - FRANCK FIFE / AFP
" Game ! Game ! Time flies at Marcoussis, Fabien Galthié's methods remain the same. Uninterrupted play, no keys, no downtime, nothing. Hello again the very high intensity. "It's three, four times more intense than in a club," blows Bernard Le Roux, yet not stingy with physical efforts. Paradoxically, the XV of France does not seem affected by any weariness a few days from an almost decisive match at the Millennium Stadium against Wales. The three-day break granted to players after Italy has no doubt to do with this. Not enough for Paul Willemse to join his family in Namibia - he spent time at Le Roux and skimmed Parisian restaurants with his double compatriot - but enough to succeed in taking the shouts of Thibault Giroud and Shaun Edwards, therefore.
Shaun Edwards, the undercover
Edwards, whom we were talking about ten days ago, is bound to be highly anticipated this week. Wales, although it has changed a bit since the World Cup, it is it which made it defensively. Inevitably, says François Cros, he gives the French some balls on the sidelines of the weekend match. “He knows this team by heart, it's a chance for us to have him on our team. He tries to transmit to us their way of playing but also the keys to manage to beat them. Needless to say that we will not know more about these keys, would miss more than we tell the enemy which of its faults the XV of France intends to exploit.
The quarter of the World Cup already forgotten
Another (inevitable) question that animates the week of the group at the CNR: the quarterfinal of the World lost in Oita against the Welsh, at the end of October. Finally, inevitable for journalists. The players, they give the impression of having nothing to wax. Sincere or bluffing? Bernard Le Roux: “Honestly I don't think about it any more than that, I am very focused on this competition, with this group, with this atmosphere. I take advantage of every moment. For two weeks, I haven't thought about Wales, we really want to do something new, I think it's positive. "
No "emotional leverage" around France-Wales last fall, to use Cros' words, but a tactico-pragmatic utility according to the Toulousain. “There are images of the quarter-finals circulating but it is to validate the launches that we have chosen or to show their offensive system to them so necessarily we looked at what they showed us on the quarter-final. But it's not a subject that is always put back on the table. "
XV of France: Gueulard thirsty for victory ... We present to you Shaun Edwards, the strong man of the defense of the Blues
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