Brice Samba on France call-up: “I’m here to learn.”

Appearing before the press this morning, Lens’ Brice Samba expressed his delight at his first call-up with the senior French national team, and pointed out that he will accept whatever role in the goalkeeping hierarchy that Didier Deschamps assigns to him.

Samba notably highlighted his pride at reaching the national team at 28 after an unusual career path: “I’m discovering the team, It’s been a long journey so I’ve got a lot of desire. My role will be to put Mike Maignan in the best conditions.”

The former Nottingham Forest man was also full of praise for France’s new number one, underlining the consistency of his performances with Milan and the need for his fellow goalkeepers to support him so that he can play as well as possible.

On his own experience arriving at Clairefontaine for the first time, Samba spoke of his pride at reaching a personal goal, albeit at a later age than others: “There’s always this childlike side, because I’m discovering [the national team] and it’s the first time. I’m here to learn, I have a lot of desire. I’m very happy about it, but I’ll have to work hard to stay here.” Asked about what aspect of the national team surprised him the most, the former Le Havre and Marseille prospect explained that he was, first of all, impressed at training facilities of Clairefontaine itself, as well as the high quality of the team around him and the togetherness of the squad. 

Samba then concluded with a word for his predecessors between the sticks for Les Bleus – “Hugo [Lloris] and Steve [Mandanda] are two monuments of French football, it’s not easy being at the top for so long”. 

GFFN | Raphaël Jucobin 

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