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Deschamps credits France response after 'little time to prepare' for Austria win

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Paul Pogba and N'Golo Kante were among the headline absentees for France, who still comfortably defeated Austria in the Nations League.
FotMob - 7 days ago

Didier Deschamps hailed France for responding with a 2-0 victory despite having "little time to prepare" to face Austria in the Nations League.

Paul Pogba, N'Golo Kante and Hugo Lloris were among the notable absentees for injury-hit France, while recent Barcelona recruit Jules Kounde limped off in Thursday's Nations League clash.

But Kylian Mbappe powered home in the second half to set Deschamps' side on their way to a win before Olivier Giroud – aged 35 years and 357 days – became France's oldest scorer.

The second-half double act from Mbappe and Giroud helped France to stave off Nations League relegation, picking up their first win to move a point clear of Austria with a game to play.

After Deschamps had to contend with a plethora of injury issues, the France head coach reflected on a job well done.

"I'm very satisfied with the way we played," he told M6. "The win is important, and we did everything we had to do, created a lot of chances and controlled the game with players who aren't used to playing with each other.

"We've had very little time to prepare, everyone has made an effort. There's a lot of positives."

Aurelien Tcouhameni benefited from the absence of Pogba, Kante and Adrien Rabiot, starting in midfield as France dominated Ralf Rangnick's side, and the Real Madrid midfielder felt his team showed their quality.

"We were determined to show a different face. We all wanted to show our true worth," Tchouameni said. 

"The conditions weren't optimal, but once you're on the pitch, there's nothing else that's important. Things went very well [with Youssouf Fofana]. You could see the understanding we have, I'm happy for him."

France will head into their final Nations League fixture with their fate in their own hands, facing Denmark on Sunday in Les Bleus' last outing before the World Cup starts in Qatar in November.