Friday, August 05, 2011

Sakho - Kaboul tandem for France v Chile

Looks likely that this, Kaboul and Sakho, will be the defensive central pairing for the match against Chile and might very well be for the Albania match as well. I forgot that Rami was suspended for a game...so Blanc will have to leverage this match to test out his central pairing.

Jumped to #3 in the queue?
Some might say that Abidal should slot back in the center, while he always stated he did not want to do so, he has spotted Barcelona this past season at central defense and done so with great aplomb. However as Blanc points out, his offensive skill on the left flank is something to be taken advantage of. The Chile match takes on even greater importance for the PSG center back as his last matches under the France flag have not been 100% reassuring. Granted it was the end of the season, playing in what amounts to exhibition matches. However, the player that was once seen as the clear "next in line" at central defense, no longer is afforded that luxury. With the likes of Koscielny returning from injury and Varane making the big move to Real Madrid, there appears to be some competition that might be emerging.

I think Blanc will allow Sakho and Kaboul to play the entire game against Chile, similar to what he did with Mexes and Rami from day 1 of his tenure. As a former international central defender, Blanc is well aware of the need for the pairing to develop a level of understanding vital to successfully navigating those waters. Something obviously lost on his predecessor - Dumbenech.

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