Journal De Bruxelles - Galthie says France have learned from defeats before Six Nations decider

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Galthie says France have learned from defeats before Six Nations decider
Galthie says France have learned from defeats before Six Nations decider

Galthie says France have learned from defeats before Six Nations decider

France coach Fabien Galthie said Thursday his team had learned from its past disappointments as they prepare to face England on Saturday hoping to win their first Six Nations title since 2010.

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The French have recalled star winger Damian Penaud to the starting lineup as they go in search of a title that has eluded them for 12 years, and also try to achieve a Grand Slam.

Penaud, who has scored three tries in this year's tournament, was forced to sit out the 13-9 win against Wales in Cardiff last Friday after he contracted Covid-19.

Galthie said he believed his team was ready for the pressure under the Stade de France floodlights.

"In terms of experience we are approaching our 25th Test together and it is our third Six Nations and we have lived through a lot together," Galthie said.

"These players now have a collective experience together, they have grown a lot in two years.

"We have learned from our defeats, our runners-up places in the tournament have taught us an enormous amount and will continue to serve us well in this collective experience of our preparation."

Raphael Ibanez said France's 40-25 victory over the All Blacks on November 20 "created a super dynamic at the heart of the team which has lasted".

But Ibanez, who spent six years playing in England, said England would treat the match as a World Cup final.

"There is no lack of passion... all their matches to them are important and it is that that makes them strong, tough to the point of backbreakingly so, and redoubtable."

Team (15-1)

Melvyn Jaminet; Damian Penaud, Gael Fickou, Jonathan Danty, Gabin Villiere; Romain Ntamack, Antoine Dupont (capt); Anthony Jelonch, Gregory Alldritt, Francois Cros; Paul Willemse, Cameron Woki; Uini Atonio, Julien Marchand, Cyril Baille

Replacements: Peato Mauvaka, Jean-Baptiste Gros, Mohamed Haouas, Donavan Taofifenua, Thibaud Flament, Dylan Cretin, Maxime Lucu, Thomas Ramos

Coach: Fabien Galthie (FRA)

A.Thys--JdB