Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris is set to captain France against England on Tuesday after receiving a resounding vote of confidence from coach Didier Deschamps.
Lloris’s blunder handed Sweden a last-minute winner in Stockholm on Friday, plunging his country’s hopes of qualifying for next year’s World Cup into difficulty.
Deschamps made clear in the aftermath that he blamed the gaffe for defeat – “He knows it is his fault and it has cost us,” he said – but has backed the Spurs stopper to redeem himself against some familiar opponents.
“He will play, definitely,” said Deschamps. “Lloris will captain. I discussed it with him and included that in my thinking. We shared the same opinion. We want him to go back on the pitch.”
Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane also backed Lloris, who has emerged as one of Europe’s top goalkeepers during five tears at Tottenham.
“I personally told him what I thought about him and that that this didn’t change anything,” Varane said.
“We all make mistakes. He will continue saving us in other games and we don’t have to cry over spilt milk.”
Deschamps is expected to hand Kylian Mbappe, perhaps the hottest property in world football, only his second cap against England.
The 18-year-old’s dazzling debut season for Monaco, in which he scored 26 goals, has attracted attention from Premier League clubs including Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City, as well as domestic rivals Paris Saint-Germain and European champions Real Madrid.
Deschamps played down concerns that moving to the Spanish giants might hinder Mbappe’s international progress, pointing to the flourishing form of Olivier Giroud for Les Bleus despite limited club action.
“It’s obviously better to play as much as possible but Giroud at Arsenal didn’t play a lot but every time he did he was very, very efficient,” he added.
“When he came to France he was quite fresh, maybe fresher than others. Game time on the pitch is not a precise science. What is more important is they need to be efficient on the pitch.”