Last night, Newcastle United midfielder Moussa Sissoko invited some L’Équipe journalists to watch Didier Deschamps’s EURO 2016 squad announcement with him at his home on Tyneside. Here is what happened.
Minutes before the announcement, Sissoko seemed very calm:
“There is no point stressing… If I had not been called up in March, then maybe it would be different, but right now I am confident. You, the journalists, are more excited than me!”
Minutes later, Sissoko’s confidence was a little less prevalent.
“Are you guys sure that I am going to be in? Because there is always a little bit of doubt…”
Following the announcement, Sissoko was reflective with his reaction:
“I am proud to be going to the Euros, it is a dream that is being realised, but that does not erase the immense disappointment of being relegated. This evening, there is joy and frustration at the same time.”
Among the text messages he received, his mentor at Toulouse Alain Casanova. Before the announcement, his Newcastle teammates including Henri Saivet wished him good luck.
“I don’t think my mother even knows that the squad is coming out today,” Sissoko joked.
Snapchats and text messages continued to flood in. His cousins were with him to watch the announcement, but Sissoko said that they were more excited about the fact that journalists were coming:
“They were already excited when I told them that journalists were coming.”
As Deschamps read out the names for the midfielders picked, Sissoko was picked last, something that did not make him worry more:
“It is in alphabetical order, I am used to it!”
And all the time the messages kept flooding in, notably from his adviser Bakari Sanogo and of course his mother too.
“I think that is the most beautiful thing about this, to see the people that I love happy.”