Blues boss happy with Real Madrid leader’s performance at Euro 2020, but admits he needs a goal
France missed the opportunity to reserve their place for the round of 16 of Euro 2020 after being held to a 1-1 draw by Hungary at the Ferenc Puskas stadium in Budapest.
Attila Fiola delighted the home crowd when he opened the scoring at half-time, but Antoine Griezmann bailed out Les Bleus when he completed a deflected pass from Kylian Mbappe to tie the process in the 66th minute.
What was said?
Benzema is still chasing his first goal since his recall to the France squad after six years in exile, and once again struggled to find openings in the final third on Saturday afternoon.
Deschamps admits the Real Madrid star needs to find the net to build his confidence, but has been pleased with his overall contribution so far.
“Benzema has a lot of experience and he will have no doubts about himself,” said the Blues head coach at his post-match press conference.
“He did some really good things, but he missed a goal. He knows people want him to score, but he knows that’s about it. He’s a striker who needs to score but the main thing is that he has confidence and knows he has mine.
Deschamps also defended Benjamin Pavard, who was taken out of position when Fiola ran to score.
“Was he in trouble?” It’s your analysis, ”added the 55-year-old. “He was important in the offensive phases. He was so involved in the offensive phase, it cost him a lot defensively, but he was still in control. “
Benzema appeared in two European Championships before being left out of Deschamps’ plans in 2015, but failed to score in the 2008 or 2012 finals.
The 33-year-old has now gone eight matches without scoring at the Euro despite 30 shots, giving him the third-worst record in history behind Clarence Seedorf (33) and Andres Iniesta (34).
Benzema was still involved in France’s best moves against Hungary and offered Mbappe an incredible chance in the first half, but was eventually replaced by Olivier Giroud with 14 minutes left.
France will now sweat the fitness of Barcelona winger Dembele ahead of his final Group F game against Portugal, a repeat of the 2016 final.
Dembele had to be taken out early in the second half against Hungary after suffering an injury, and Deschamps was able to take stock of his condition after the game.
“He was hit in the tendon behind the knee, it will be necessary to check. ” he said. “He continued a bit, he wanted to cross and felt quite uneasy. I brought him out. We’ll have to keep an eye on it. “