Classy France Too Good For Scotland


Olivier Giroud scores for France against Scotland

France rounded off their Euro 2016 preparations with a classy and comprehensive victory over Scotland.

Didier Deschamps’ side ran amok to underline their pre-tournament billing as favourites.

Olivier Giroud answered some of his critics with the opening two goals and his Arsenal team-mate Laurent Koscielny headed a third before the break.

Substitutions mercifully broke up the second-half rhythm, allowing the Scots to escape with their dignity intact.

The reality is that this performance and result are no indication in helping to answer that question, but the tournament hosts certainly appear to have the quality to do so.

Their midfield options are mouth-watering – the trio of N’Golo Kante, Paul Pogba and Blaise Matuidi look masterful, oozing power and athleticism.

Giroud has been booed by French supporters and criticised by local media in the build-up to the Euros, but a crafty back-heel and an alert close-range rebound earned him a standing ovation from the Metz public.

Kingsley Coman, Dimitri Payet, Antoine Griezmann and Anthony Martial were also given game time as Deschamps examined his options before Friday’s competitive bow against Romania in Paris.

Questions have been asked about the strength of their defence, but Scotland offered no test of that.

Gordon Strachan lamented his side’s inability to pass and control the ball in Sunday’s 1-0 defeat by Italy and there was little to be pleased about on this occasion either.

They were afforded more possession than against the Italians, but rarely used it purposefully and once again failed to muster a shot on target.

Goalkeeper David Marshall, as he did six days ago, kept the damage to a minimum with a host of splendid saves and will be difficult to displace when the World Cup qualifiers begin in September.

Another small crumb of comfort for the Scotland coach will be an assured display from young Swansea full-back Stephen Kingsley when he came on in the second half, with Rangers winger Barrie McKay also making his senior international debut from the bench.

Man of the match

Pogba ran the show in imperious fashion and twice came within inches of adding a fourth goal, first striking the post with a fierce free-kick before curling another on to the roof of the net.


[Source  BBC]