England friendly still matters to Malouda

LONDON — Florent Malouda believes France’s friendly international against England here at Wembley will give Les Bleus a chance to discover how far they’ve come as a side since a dismal World Cup campaign.

By (AFP)

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Published: Tue 16 Nov 2010, 10:44 AM

Last updated: Mon 6 Apr 2015, 4:32 AM

Rows between players and then manager Raymond Domenech led to splits within the camp and a group stage exit in South Africa earlier this year.

England fared little better but with Laurent Blanc having replaced Domenech, France hope to put a miserable period in their football history behind them.

And Chelsea midfielder Malouda does not regard Wednesday’s match as a distraction from club duties.

“There are lots of games coming up in the Premier League but when you play England at Wembley, it is a big moment.

“A good performance and good result will be good for our confidence and provide a reference point to show exactly where we are as a team.

“We are on the way up and it is a moment for the youngsters in the team to create a bit of history but let’s not put too much pressure on them by expecting too much too soon.

“These games against England and then Brazil, if we do well, will put us in a positive frame of mind for when the European qualifiers begin again.

“The idea is to move up the FIFA rankings and, playing and doing well against the likes of England and Brazil, is a good chance to do that.”

France’s players are still involved in a row over World Cup bonuses but Malouda said: “This bonus scheme has always been in place. Everyone is making too much of a fuss about it.

“We must agree on a solution and we are close to doing that. This has been built up in the media and it is a case of us taking a responsible attitude.

“We all need to meet in private and then let people know what’s happened. But the main thing is we show our fans we care about playing for France.

“We want to do the business on the field at the time of a rebirth of French football,” he added.

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