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Unbeaten France taking underdog mentality into game against Scotland


Unbeaten France heads to Murrayfield with an underdog mentality and a point to prove against Scotland on Saturday as it continues its bid for a Six Nations Grand Slam.

Fabien Galthie’s team is two-fifths of the way towards a first title and Grand Slam since 2010, after home wins against Italy (37-10) and Ireland (30-24).

Nevertheless, France is wary of a Scotland side that has beaten it in their last two Six Nations encounters and will be seeking its first hat trick of victories against France in the Six Nations in 64 years.

“We’re going there with an underdog mentality and with a point to prove,” said France’s English-born defense coach Shaun Edwards, who has played a key role in molding Les Bleus into a potentially world-beating force 18 months before a home World Cup.

“Scotland are the only side we haven’t beaten in the Six Nations since Fabien and I took over. They’ve got the better of us on the last two occasions,” he added.

Overcoming an outstanding Ireland side in Paris two weeks ago showed France has maintained the momentum of its stunning 40-25 success against New Zealand at the Stade de France in November.

France arrives in Edinburgh as the only unbeaten team left in the 2022 Six Nations and on a run of five straight victories in all competitions.

Scotland followed its stirring 20-17 home win against England with an abject performance in a 20-17 defeat by Wales in Cardiff.

Gregor Townsend’s side, however, dashed France’s Grand Slam hopes at Murrayfield in 2020, winning 28-17 after French prop Mohamed Haouas was sent off for punching Jamie Ritchie, and ended Les Bleus’ 2021 title challenge with a dramatic 27-23 win in Paris.

France did win an Autumn Nations Cup fixture 22-15 against a weakened Scotland team at an empty Murrayfield in November 2020 and has yet to lose three successive Championship matches in a row to the Scots in the Six Nations era.

The last time it happened dates back to the era of the Five Nations, in 1958.

“Scotland are a team that pose problems for us and we are aware of the level we will need to be at this time,” said Galthie, who has kept changes to a minimum.

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