No French repeat of 2010 shame
France boss Laurent Blanc insists his squad are not about to be torn apart by internal conflict at Euro 2012 ahead of facing Spain.
Last Updated: 22/06/12 5:57pm
France boss Laurent Blanc insists his squad are not about to be torn apart by internal conflict at Euro 2012 ahead of facing defending champions Spain in the quarter-finals.
A dressing-room row among players which followed Tuesday's defeat by Sweden had delayed preparations for Saturday's meeting with La Roja.
And Blanc accepted calm had to be restored within the camp after the initial angry reaction to the setback which cost France top spot behind England in Group D.
There are echoes of the 2010 World Cup, where under former boss Raymond Domenech, Les Bleus returned home in humiliation following a massive internal bust-up.
But Blanc said of the Euro 2012 campaign: "There is no conflict. There were words exchanged after the game. There was a reaction. Some players were very angry. That is true.
"Certain things were said. We acted on those. People are worked up and angry after a defeat and there were raised voices.
"We took a bit of time to calm everyone down and coming back to Donetsk from Kiev to our base camp allowed us to do that and be a bit more at peace.
"It did delay us in terms of when we could start preparing for the game with Spain but you have priorities that have to be dealt with.
"But, since Wednesday, everything has been about working towards the game with Spain.
"Even though we were disappointed on Tuesday, the fact is we have still qualified for the quarter-finals. We have not had to pack our bags and go home."
Blanc is under no illusions as to the size of the task facing his side if they are to cause an upset against Spain.
He said: "Normally we try to adapt as little as possible to our opponents and play to our own strengths, but we are going to be coming up against a very good side.
"Spain are a little bit further on than us and will have 65 to 70 per cent of the possession in a game. That is a problem for any side to deal with.
"They have great players who play for great clubs in Barcelona and Real Madrid. From a fan's perspective, it is a delight to watch them play."