This is what you call an almost perfect evening. With the exception of an injury to Lucas Hernandez, a blow to the right knee, nothing could spoil the good start of the French team on Tuesday evening at the World Cup in Qatar. The smile on the face of Olivier Giroud, too, who, after scoring twice against Australia, joined Thierry Henry at the top of the French team’s top scorer list with 51 goals.
What is it like to match Thierry Henry?
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OLIVIER GIrou. It’s a pride, an honor. To be with him in the French national team after those 11 years with the Blues… I appreciate all the work done, but above all, I remember the excellent teams I played for the French national team. This is a team work, I try to finish the work of the guys well. And today we got along well.
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How do you prepare when you know such a record is coming?
To be honest, it’s something in my head, but it doesn’t interfere with me on the field in any way. I definitely think about what I did to do and help the guys. My personal case comes after. When I get good balls in the zone, I try to convert them. It’s good for me, of course, but it’s good for the team.
You have just scored five goals in five games for the Blues. Looks like you had a big appetite to catch up with Henry…
(laughs). Yes, that’s for sure. When I was recalled, I had a strong desire to show that I was 200% with the Blues. The coach gave me this opportunity, I took advantage of it. It is important to be present at decisive moments, this one of them. I hope we all continue together.
Do you have a word for Thierry Henry?
(Shows his phone) Yes, there is a lot of friendship between us, and I’m sure he should have texted me there. We love to sleep, so I can tell him, “Look out, Titi, I’m coming! »
“Yeah, I’m from the step gang, let’s go! »
How do you like the attack animation with Antoine Griezmann below normal?
It was different, we had to find reference points when we didn’t have the ball. These are automatisms to find. You have to communicate well to replace yourself and prevent the opponent’s ball from getting out. When you have the ball, it does not change, Antoine walks along the front of the attack and in the center. When you don’t have the ball, you have to find automatism. We saw at the beginning of the match that we were out of step, and this made it easier for the Aussies to find passes between the lines. These are small details that need to be improved. But Antoine is a midfielder at heart with a sense of self-sacrifice, a lot of game volume, so it’s a position he can fill with no problem.
You came as a substitute for this World Cup. What does it change to be suddenly a movable holder, an attack leader, even a savior?
No, I do not like this idea, the star in the selection is the team, cohesion and our cohesion. If I can bring my stone into the building, I will do so with great pleasure. When you are a member, you are already very happy in such a group, but you are even more happy when you are on the field. And when I’m there, the minimum is to show my satisfaction and give everything for this team.
Are you in the Brewers Gang now?
What is a gang gang? (we explain to him the link to Kylian Mbappe’s post about his leading position at PSG). Ah, I didn’t know (laughs)… Yes, I’m a striker who plays in a deflection, in a fulcrum. I am a target, as they say in England. Kik knows my qualities, I know him, and each of us has a role to play. But yes, I’m from the step gang, let’s go!