• With 33 medals including ten gold, the French team finished in 8th place in the standings.

  • After the 42 medals in Rio, it is a worrying setback before the Paris Olympics in three years.

  • Team sports helped limit the damage in the second week, somewhat masking the bankruptcy of athletics and swimming. 

From our special correspondent in Tokyo,

It's a recurring joke that amused French reporters during the fortnight.

Claude Onesta, will he succeed in the Grand Slam of the French medals?

The high performance manitou at the new National Sports Agency (ANS) was on all the venues at once in Japan, sometimes in hologram certainly.

We are pretty sure, however, that the former coach of the Blues would have liked to multiply even more.

With only 33 medals, the French delegation regressed in the same waters as Athens, in 2004, from where the Blues had returned with one more gold bar around their neck (eleven in Greece, ten in Japan).

Collective sport saved the blue house

And yet this record is heightened in extremis by the incredible raid on French team sports. Five teams in the final, six medals, three gold, playground sports, as they are sometimes called with disdain, illuminated the last days in Tokyo, even if they did not experience it like that. “We followed the Games a bit but we were quite focused on ourselves, what we were doing,” reveals Benjamin Toniutti, more concerned about the place of volleyball in this orgy of victories. “We are lucky to have an exceptional nation in team sports, it must be said. And suddenly for us it's hard to find a place for ourselves. When we do a result like this where we could have all the light for us, well the light is for everyone! "

“There are still teams that for ten years have been on the verge of the podium or on the podium in all the major competitions, rejoices for its part Onesta.

What is surprising is that they are all there.

I think this is the confirmation that French collective sport, when it wants to give itself the means [hello football], seems to provide the guarantee of a preparation which allows each athlete to be at the Olympic rendezvous. at its best this season.


The harvest of judo and fencing, the bankruptcy of athlete or boxing

A know-how that has not transpired in all disciplines. While France was aiming for its usual forty medals, an objective already not very folichon when the next Olympics are at home, the objective has been planed as individual disillusionment progresses. Yet well launched by judo and fencing (13 medals), the French delegation missed out on three major sports of the Games: boxing, swimming and athletics (only 2 medals against fifteen in Brazil). Let us add that there are no excuses to be found by going to look at the chocolate medals. The informal ranking held by our friends from the FFL shows that even for places 4 to 6, France lies at the bottom of the top 10.

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games 🇯🇵 🏆 TABLE OF PRESQU'MEDALS.


End of cruel Olympics from cruel homes.

The 🇫🇷 falls to 12th place (🇭🇺 11th and 🇮🇹 10th).

The United States, Russia (Or ROC if you will) and Japan podium.

Big British tumble to please us a little.


- Fédé 🇫🇷 de la Lose (@FFLose) August 8, 2021

On the poor performances of other disciplines, Claude Onesta does not target anyone in particular: “The lack of professionalism sometimes in other disciplines could have been a form of constraint in the realization of the performances.

“It appeared to us, while discussing with a lot of coaches, that it was difficult to blame the French athletes for a lack of investment.

On the other hand, we were sometimes surprised by their own surprise:

  • Yes, the level is higher at the Olympics than elsewhere.

  • Yes, some are better on D-Day of the Games than on a World Cup event in Romania in bitter cold in February.

  • Yes, the Covid and the lack of competitions to calibrate led many to hide their game in the previous months.

"The interest of Tokyo was to have a photograph in real time, the number of overall medals interests me little," explains Claude Onesta.

What interests me, however, is whether the coin that was made by surprise is capable of being solidified the next time.

What interests me is to bring out the weaknesses of those who have been in failure to better support them the next time.


So, it will be necessary to wonder about all these big favorites with the gold which dominated their discipline in the previous seasons and who missed it, as it will be appropriate to wonder why France is picking up on almost all the new disciplines. introduced by the IOC in Tokyo.

Finally all except karate, which Paris 2024 did not see fit to defend despite the announced gold medal - and materialized - by Steven Da Costa.

Fifty medals in Paris?

The ANS has so far integrated 400 athletes, Winter and Paralympic Games included, to its elite list, one that offers additional funding and resources in order to rid the athlete of all performance parasites. One example among others: Jean Quicampoix, golden in pistol shooting, was able to train at his home in Marseille on the same target model as in Tokyo, thanks to a check for 150,000 euros from the Agency to the Federation shooting.

Quentin Bigot, fifth in the hammer throw, also wants to put things right when we throw it on the failed Olympiad of the French athlete: "I am one of those who think that the result depends to 95% of athletes. The 5% of good conditions, the Fédé gives them to us all. And it is a pitcher who says it whereas we have often heard that the pitchers are the poor relatives of the Fed. I don't know what more I could have asked for this year from the Fed or the ANS. When I do 5th, it's me, that's all. If the athletes are not good, it is not the fault of the federation. "

The overall medal-winning potential of a nation has little to do with the potential generation hollow, as the English have proven, who have pranced at over 60 medals since they decided to put in place a real development program for high-level sport before the London Olympics. In the absence of a real equivalent, France will therefore not discover medals under the shells by 2024, even if the status of host country will automatically allow a move upmarket thanks to the qualification quotas. “Overall, we are sure to be able to be present in each category, pleads Patrick Wincke, the DTN of boxing until the spring. Fourteen athletes instead of five are not the same for medals. "

“Those who are potentially on the podium in Paris, they were there, not elsewhere, concedes Onesta.

We should perhaps further reduce the athletes we follow and work with them even more in detail to optimize their preparation.

There are people to whom we will give a higher level of requirement, because the confidence we give was not enough to be there.

But the nuggets, we know them.

“They are unfortunately far from being numerous enough to hope for 80 medals in Paris, the goal set by Laura Flessel in 2017. 50, it will already be the end of the world.


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