'I'll give him freedom, but he will have...': France boss fires huge warning for Kylian Mbappe ahead of FIFA World Cup
Didier Deschamps had a big warning for Kylian Mbappe ahead of the FIFA World Cup, that begins on November 20.
The FIFA World Cup opens on November 20 in Qatar and one of the favourites to lift the title are the defending champions, France. Les Bleus enjoyed a terrific run in the 2018 edition of the tournament, when they enjoyed an invincible run and eventually defeated Croatia 4-2 in the final. Kylian Mbappe was the star of the side's terrific campaign in the World Cup, as he scored four goals and was named the best young player in the tournament. Now 23, Mbappe is one of the highest-earning footballers in the world and one of the key members of Paris Saint-Germain; however, France manager Didier Deschamps had a stern message for the star youngster.
Deschamps, speaking about the forward ahead of the World Cup, said that Mbappe needs to play for the collective cause – referring to the player's “defensive obligations” for France.
“He’s a forward who needs freedom. I will give him that freedom. But he will have defensive obligations, less than all the other players behind him, midfielders and defenders. But at the highest level, we can’t afford to lose a player when we don’t have the ball,” Deschamps told Telefoot.
The France boss' comments come as Mbappe has shown significant unwillingness in tracking back for his club Paris Saint-Germain on numerous occasions during the side's domestic and Champions League matches.
France announced their World Cup squad on November 9, with goalkeeper Hugo Lloris leading the side. The side will miss the famed midfield duo of Ngolo Kante and Paul Pogba with injuries, and has the likes of Adrien Rabiot, Aurelien Tchouameni, Matteo Guendouzi and Eduardo Camavinga among others in the midfield role.
This year's Ballon d'OR winner Karim Benzema is expected to lead the French forward line alongside Kylian Mbappe and Antoine Griezmann.
France begin their campaign in the 2022 World Cup against Australia on November 22. The side is in Group D with Denmark and Tunisia being the other two teams. France take on Denmark on November 26, and will meet Tunisia three days later (November 30).
The tournament opens with hosts Qatar taking on Ecuador at the Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor.