France head coach Didier Deschamps has labelled their European Championship semi-final opponents Germany as the best football team in the world, but believes in his side’s capacity to beat the reigning world champions.
Olivier Giroud scored a brace as the hosts claimed a 5-2 win over Iceland in the quarter-finals here on Sunday to set up a blockbuster last-four meeting with Germany, after Joachim Low’s men pipped Italy in the last eight.
Deschamps has no doubt about the quality of Low’s team, as he insisted they will decide their own fate.
“I’m not going to put any pressure on Joachim Low. He is very calm and relaxed. Germany is the best side in Europe and the world,” Deschamps was quoted as saying by goal.com ahead of the semi-final at Marseille’s Stade Velodrome on Thursday.
“In this competition, even though they had a bit of a scare against Italy, they are really in charge of their own progress. It is not going be a stroll in the park. We are going to go all out for it. The fact we are playing in France is great. Everything is possible.”
Deschamps was unwilling to reveal if he will change formation against Germany, who started with a three-man defence in their win over Italy.
“It won’t be the same balance of power because Germany has so much technical quality from the goalkeeper right through from their defence to the attack. They often tend to hog ball possession. It’s all about adaptation, not only to their strengths but also on what we’re able to produce too.”
“So far, most of our opponents came out trying to defend. I know that won’t be the case against Germany. The more we can make them defend the better it can be,” Deschamps, who captained France to the 1998 World Cup and 2000 Euro titles, added.
The two nations last met in a friendly in November last year, with France winning 2-0 in Paris in a clash marred by terrorist attacks in the city.
The winner will advance to the final against Wales or Portugal, who meet in the first semi-final in Lyon on Wednesday.