World Cup 2022 final: Didier Deschamps unsure on France future after Argentina loss

France coach Didier Deschamps walks past the trophy after World Cup final defeat to Argentina.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Didier Deschamps was giving nothing away on his future as France boss after Les Bleus narrowly missed out on winning a second successive World Cup.

France came from 2-0 down to take the final against Argentina to penalties after a thrilling 3-3 draw, featuring a hat-trick from Kylian Mbappe, before ultimately succumbing to defeat.

"Even if we'd won, I wouldn't have been able to reply to that question tonight," he said, when asked whether he'd be staying as coach.

"I'll have a meeting with the president at the beginning of next year, and then you'll find out.

"I'm very sad for my players and all of my staff. If you look at the match as a whole, in the first 70 minutes we were playing a very aggressive and dynamic opponent and just weren't up to the same level. We were lacking a bit of energy. We made a magnificent comeback – I went through a lot of emotions tonight, and there are some regrets, because we were so close to winning."

On Mbappe, who became the first player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup final since Geoff Hurst in 1996, he said: "Kylian really left his mark on this final, but unfortunately he didn't leave it in the way he would have liked, and that's why he was so disappointed at the end, like all of the players."

The France squad had been hit by flu in recent days, but Deschamps insisted that the 11 who started the game were no suffering any ill-effects, explaining that he substituted Olivier Giroud and Ousmane Dembele after just 41 minutes in a bid to somehow turn around the shape of the game.

"The whole of the squad has been facing a tricky situation for a while now, and maybe that had a physical or psychological impact," he said.

"But I had no concerns about the players who started the match they were 100 per cent fit. We only had four days since the last match, so there was some tiredness perhaps, but that's not an excuse.

"We just didn't show the same energy as in previous matches – for the first hour or so, we weren't in the match.

"The substitutions were tactical choices – I wanted to make a change because I saw we were lacking freshness – I'm not blaming Olivier or Ousmane because they made a great effort, but I saw they weren't 100 per cent, and I made a change in position also to move Kylian from the wing, because I saw we were in deep trouble.

"Everything is possible in football, you can change things in the blink of an eye and we almost did, but unfortunately it just wasn't enough."

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Chris Flanagan
Staff Writer

Chris joined FourFourTwo in 2015 and has reported from 20 countries, in places as varied as Jerusalem and the Arctic Circle. He's interviewed Pele, Zlatan and Santa Claus (it's a long story), as well as covering Euro 2020 and the Clasico. He previously spent 10 years as a newspaper journalist, and completed the 92 in 2017.