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High-flying France saluted by losers Switzerland

French and Swiss media’s reaction to les Bleus crushing Switzerland 5-2

June 22, 2014 By Roxane Coche
The 5-2 French win over Switzerland came as a shock worldwide. French media praised the performance of its team while the Swiss press recognized the superiority of les Bleus.

With eight goals in two matches, team France has impressed at the World Cup so far. These results are in complete contrast with the 2010 competition in South Africa where les Bleus not only lost in the group phase, but also made international headlines for refusing to practice after Nicolas Anelka was sent back to France for insulting then-manager Raymond Domenech.

Last night in Salvador do Bahia, Benzema and his teammates crushed a sorry Swiss team (5-2). A phenomenal performance for France, which the press on both sides of the Alps recognizes. French daily sports newspaper L’Équipe qualified the national team as “almost perfect,” praising their breathtakingly high-level performance on the front-page, but regretting the two late Swiss goals (81’ and 87’).

In the same vein, the renowned Le Monde compared the game to a “recital” from the French side, while another daily, Libération, writes that France cruised through the match showing that Switzerland’s status as the sixth best nation in the world (according to FIFA rankings) was “useless.” 

The headline on the website of soccer magazine So Foot cannot be any clearer: “France gulped down Switzerland,” which goes along with that on the magazine Le Point’s website: “France stripped Switzerland.”

In Brazil as outsiders, les Bleus have taken a different dimension after only two World Cup games, so much so that Courrier International is already wondering “how far this team can go.” But beware, website Spacefoot warns to not become big-headed because “the unity of the French group is its main strength, more so than individualities, and it would be detrimental to lose sight of that. And that, Didier Deschamps must have reminded his players right after the game.”

Looking at the Nati, both the French and the Swiss press admit that it was far from being the team’s best performance. Undefeated for two years, “Switzerland completely gave in defensively” wrote French magazine Le Point on its website.

Swiss daily newspaper Le Matin, which ran with a provoking “pluck this rooster” headline yesterday, talks about the collapse of its national team, calling the game a “nightmare” during which “the best Swiss team of all time took the biggest spanking of its history.”

German-language Blick is already bidding farewell to the playoffs, hinting at the potential elimination of the Swiss team. In contrast, French-language La Tribune de Genève stays positive focusing on the fact that Switzerland is not yet out of this World Cup: “Yes, yes, we can be humiliated 5-2 and still qualify for the round of 16.”

Even though Switzerland did run into “a better team,” as written in the French edition of Swiss publication 20 minutes, Switzerland is indeed not out of the tournament yet, and will play its qualification on Wednesday against Honduras in Manaus, while France will play Ecuador in Rio de Janeiro.

Written by Roxane Coche.

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