Oh the cliches I could start blabbering on about. Which French team will turn up on the day? The great French flair. The Gallic charm. Blah blah blah.
France aren’t going to win it this time. They have fallen apart at the seams with a coach that makes Peter de Villiers look like a nobel prize winner. The team has fallen out in nuclear fashion publicly with Lievremont and him with his players. And the humiliating loss against Tonga would not have done them any favours either leading into the knockouts. France have disappointed this tournament. It’s a shame, but they’ll be back.
Ferdy’s pick: quarter finalists.
That bag of cliches becomes a Louis Vuitton suitcase when talking about Les Bleus. No one knows the upsets they can dish out more than an All Blacks fan, and they even beat us in Dunedin in 2009.
However, the travelling circus that is Marc Lievremont’s selection policy has reached new levels in this World Cup. No Florian Fritz or Yannick Jauzion of Toulon picked, and he has tinkered constantly since passing through Duty Free, and that is the shame of it all – this team of immense ability has never had a chance to gel before or during the tournament.
Maybe its a twisted sentimentality that I hope France get up for this, and “do to England, what they did to us”, but if they have any self-respect, any desire not to become a laughing stock, spoiled little gaggle of enfants like their football team, they’ll sort their heads out and blitz England for pride alone. Then they can fold in the semi.
They lost two pool games, and should not be here at all, but for class across the park and accurate goal kicking ... I am picking them.
Slugso: France by a late try. Take that Ashton.