Euro 2022: Everything you need to know about France29 June 2022
France Euro 2022 group stage fixtures
How they qualified
Major tournament record
Best European Championship performance: Quarter-finals- 2009, 2013 & 2017.
Most-recent European Championship performance: Quarter-finals- 2017.
FIFA World Cup
Best World Cup performance: Semi-finals- 2011.
Most-recent World performance: Quarter-finals- 2019.
Best Olympic performance: Semi-finals- 2012.
Most-recent Olympic performance: Quarter-final- 2016.
France at Euro 2022: Can les Bleues break their quarter-final hoodoo?
Will perennial underachievers France finally reach their first-ever major tournament final?
French club Olympique Lyonnais have dominated the Champions League, winning eight of the last 12 final, thanks to a core of domestic players.
However, this has not translated into international success with France’s only semi-final appearances coming at World Cup 2011 and the 2012 Olympics.
At the European Championships, les Bleues have fallen in the quarter-finals at each of the lsat three editions, most recently to England five years ago.
Likewise, at the last World Cup on home soil, France beat Korea Republic, Norway, Nigeria and Brazil, before being ousted in the last eight by USA.
Since that tournament though, Head Coach Corinne Diacre has proved to be a decisive figure, falling out with key players.
As a result, Amandine Henry, Eugénie Le Sommer, Gaëtane Thiney and Sarah Bouhaddi, who have 580 caps between them, all won’t be involved this summer.
Henry, the long-standing captain, and Le Sommer, the country’s record goal-scorer, are notable absentees in particular.
Despite this, France have already qualified for World Cup 2023 and have won their last 13 internationals.
This includes winning all three matches at February’s Tournoi, beating Finland, Brazil and the Netherlands in that friendly competition.
But, the fact key players have been omitted just adds extra scrutiny on Diacre, needing a good tournament to hold onto her job.
France are likely to get out of their group, featuring Italy, Belgium and Iceland, with the serious tests to come in the knockout rounds.
Given that heavyweights Sweden and Netherlands are likely to come out of the group next-door, another quarter-final exit could be on the cards.
Key players: Wendie Renard
Without doubt, the most high-profile player in this squad is centre-back extraordinaire Wendie Renard.
Since making her debut 11 years ago, she’s accumulated 131 caps, featuring at two World Cups, two Olympics and this’ll be her third Euros.
What is most notable is that, given Renard is a centre-back, she has scored 33 times for her country; only six Frenchwomen have scored more.
This includes four goals at the 2019 World Cup, starting with a brace in the tournament’s opening match against Korea Republic.
The 31 year old has spent her entire club career with Olympique Lyonnais, signing for them after a trail at the age of just 16.
With Lyon, Renard has picked up a staggering 34 major honours, including 14 Division 1 titles and eight Champions League winners medals.
She has started in ten Champions League Finals, six as captain, spanning a 12 year period.
Without doubt, Renard continues to be one of the best defenders on the planet, and remains central to France’s success.
Key players: Grace Geyoro
In comparison to the captain, midfielder Grace Geyoro is a relative newcomer to this French side.
The 24 year old has been a full-international since 2017, accumulating 49 caps, but was a non-playing member of the squad five summers ago.
Two years later, at the World Cup on home soil, Geyoro did see some action, coming off the bench against Korea Republic and then Nigeria.
These days, she’s a much more established member of this team, featuring in all nine qualification and Tournoi matches this season.
Despite being a defensive midfielder, she sometimes chips in with the odd goal, netting three times during World Cup 2023 qualifying.
Geyoro joined Paris Saint-Germain as a 15 year old and, since her senior debut eight years ago, has made 155 appearances for les Rouge-et-Bleu.
This season, she was a central figure as PSG won the Coupe de France, finished second in Division 1, and reached the Champions League semi-finals.
Now a key figure at international tournament for the first time, Geyoro will get the chance to go head-to-head with Europe’s best midfielders.
Key players: Marie-Antoinette Katoto
In the absence of both Amandine Henry and Eugénie Le Sommer, it’s Marie-Antoinette Katoto who will be spearheading the French attack.
Three summers ago, all the talk was about Katoto’s exclusion from the squad.
Despite having been Division 1’s top-scorer, she was not included in the World Cup squad, but is now back for her first taste of major tournament football.
Given that the two superstar strikers France could pick both aren’t in the squad, this is just as well.
Katoto was their top-scorer in Euro 2022 qualifying, netting eight times, also scoring ten times in the ongoing World Cup qualifying cycle.
Back in February, the 23 year old’s stock rose even higher when she scored braces against both Netherlands and Brazil during the Tournoi.
At club level, Katoto is also a one-club player, making 147 appearances for Paris Saint-Germain since her senior debut in April 2015.
These games have yielded a very impressive 136 goals, 32 of which came this season, including a hat-trick in the Coupe de France Final.
Having netted against Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Lyon in the Champions League, Katoto has shown she can operate at the highest level.
France possible starting line-up for Euro 2022
France’s full squad for Euro 2022
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