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French Reaction: Post-Match Quotes

French Reaction: Post-Match Quotes

See below for post-match quotes from the French management and players in the aftermath of their dramatic 20-17 win over Ireland at Croke Park on Sunday.



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“We controlled the game for almost all of the first half and then, suddenly, a whole lot of little details that can change everything went in Ireland’s favour.

“They made it a very hard struggle for us but what happened at the end will give a lot of experience and a little touch of confidence with regards to our World Cup match against them.

“We didn’t look at this game in the context of the World Cup. It’s the Six Nations and we came here to stop Ireland from being Grand Slam winners because we didn’t want them coming to the World Cup with that status. So our main target, not our only target, was to stop Ireland in the Six Nations.

“We succeeded in that and we are very happy.

“On the other hand, there will be a lot of work to do because there was the lack of precision and we have to work on that.”


“The thing I want to remember from this game was the spirit of the players.

“The symbol of that spirit was the drop goal from Lionel (Beauxis). It missed but we still came back and scored the try. I feel great joy and pride over the performance of our players.

“But yes, we were weak during some moments of the game, but nothing got past us. We could have led by more at half-time and went off the boil a bit in the second half, but no one gave up.

“With good aggression and solid defence we managed to stay in the game. We missed two penalties and two try-scoring opportunities and then had a drop goal off the post that could have put us in front.

“We made some mistakes but most of them were through a lack of concentration – that’s not too serious and can be addressed in training.

“What we did show was belief. Right until the end we felt we could win the game.”


“It is a shame (we didn’t score more in the first half) because we had the chances, but we could not finish them off and leave an imprint on the opposition.

“On the pitch, you could sense it – the team was nervous. Missing the little things can make the difference, and you know you can pay dearly for it.

“We also stressed the need to keep our discipline, but we were penalised too many times, especially on the ground.

“We won and that is the most important thing, but it wasn’t so accomplished.”


“This is a great win for us against a really good Irish team who were going for the Grand Slam and who we play again at the World Cup in a few months. They had great backing from their fans, who were very respectful to us.

“This stadium is beautiful. This win is all the more glorious for us because we showed great heart to take the victory.”


“This Irish team beat South Africa and Australia, put 50 points on the Pacific Islanders and won in Wales – so this is a big win for us. They are a team on the up.

“It was a noisy atmosphere, great to play in and the Irish were full of aggression. But we played well as a team. We are very pleased to have two wins from two in the championship, even if we haven’t played at our best yet.

“Ireland did not pose too many problems for us in the first half, but we let our concentration slip a little in the second half. We came through though and we’re well aware that England, having won the Grand Slam in 2003, went on to be world champions that year.”


“It was a big honour for us to be the first country to play Ireland in this stadium. We know the historical nature of this place, not just for sport, but for the story of Ireland.

“A lot of French people came to Dublin especially for this special match. It is a critical moment for the relationship between Ireland and France.”


“This was a really good win for us. We had a good start but then, after fifteen minutes, we lost control of the game. We gave the Irish too much ball and weren’t aggressive in defence. We changed that in the second half.

“When Vincent (Clerc) scored the try, it was a fantastic moment.”