After France’s 1-1 draw against a spirited Albania at home, we take a look at the performance of each Les Bleus player, giving them a rating out of 10 in the process:
Hugo Lloris – 8
Had a surprising amount to do, as Albania carried a threat on the counter throughout the match. Made some key saves, early on from Cana’s header and then in the second half from Hysaj’s powerful strike. Could do nothing about Mavraj’s header to open the scoring.
Christophe Jallet – 5.5
Did not have the best of games overall, and a couple of defensive lapses could have cost him had Les Bleus been playing against a more clinical opposition. In particular, his mistake let Lenjani through on goal early on, but the forward was not able to capitalise.
Raphael Varane – 7
The Real Madrid man put in another solid performance at the heart of the French defence, further affirming that he will be in all likelihood be a future stalwart at the back for Les Bleus. Looked to be the leader at the back despite his young age.
Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa – 5.5
Struggled a little defensively with the pace of some of the Albanian players. He was caught out in the second half when Hysaj made a clever run in behind him to burst through on goal, but Lloris pulled off a good save.
Lucas Digne – 7
Was his usual energetic self in terms of attacking play down the wing. Has to be a little careful to choose when to make his attacking runs so he doesn’t get exposed, but almost created a goal when his low cross for Valbuena was just cut out by a sliding Agolli.
Yohan Cabaye – 6
A solid, if unspectacular, performance from the midfielder. His lack of playing time at PSG showed a little in terms of his energy, but his distribution was on point and almost scored a wonderful long-range goal in the first half.
Moussa Sissoko – 6.5
Looked lively in the second half, when his link-up play with Lacazette in particular looked promising, as he twice released the Lyon man to give him good opportunities to score. However, he dropped off a little in the second period.
Paul Pogba – 6
If there were separate ratings for defending and attacking, Pogba would get a 4 and 8 respectively… so he’s given a 6 overall. He twice lost his marker on set pieces, and the second time was crucial, as he allowed Mavraj to head home Albania’s opener. However, offensively he was always driving Les Bleus forward, and was one of the main players behind the late fightback to equalise.
Mathieu Valbuena – 5.5
Did not have one of his better games yesterday. His delivery from set pieces was largely poor, and he often failed to beat even the first man to give his team mates a chance to attack the ball.
Alexandre Lacazette – 6.5
Whilst he looked very lively throughout his time on the field, he never really threatened the Albanian goal, other than a few weak shots from range. However, his speed and link-up play will please Deschamps.
Karim Benzema – 6.5
It was one of those days for the Real Madrid man. He got into positions very well to score goals, but he just couldn’t put his chances away. This was epitomised after France had equalised for 1-1, when the ball dropped to him on the volley just 6 yards out, but he blazed his effort over the bar.
Antoine Griezmann (sub.) – 8
The only substitute who had time to make an impact, and he did brilliantly after he came on with 30 or so minutes to go. He was picking up the ball and driving at defenders, something Les Bleus had failed to do earlier, and got his reward with a brilliant solo goal to equalise.