After the youngster was blasted for his poor showing in France’s surprise 2-0 defeat to Turkey, Didier Deschamps has come out to defend Kylian Mbappe.
Strikes from Kaan Ayhan and Cengiz Under was the difference between both teams as France got beat in Konya and vacated top spot in the group.
Mbappe got the most criticism, having lost possession 22 times – the most in a single game for his country, but his coach has come out to defend him.
Didier said, “Apart from Hugo Lloris, who was at his level in Turkey, all the others were below what they have to do,”
“You [the media] target Kylian most, but I look from a collective point of view. He was below his best, he had less mobility.
“In his individual risk-taking, which is part of his qualities, he did not have the success he usually has, and he did not always receive the ball in the best positions.
“But I’m not going to have any special treatment for Kylian. I talk to him as I talk to the other players, and he and the others depend on a collective.”
“It is [the case] for all French players who have been to the World Cup,” he said. “The holidays have been cut short, the calendars are hyper-charged and there is an extension [to the season].
“But it’s valid for other nations. When we go after a competition, the season after is like that. The holidays will do them good, and they need them.
“We have one last important collective effort to make before they switch to the rest they need.”