Deschamps issues Pogba with World Cup Fitness Warning Belly Up Sports

France coach Didier Deschamps has warned Paul Pogba that he could miss the World Cup if he is not fully fit. Didier explained it was “inconceivable” that he could take a reasonably fit Pogba to the tournament.

The 29-year-old midfielder was part of France’s 2018 World Cup winning team. He scored in the 4-2 win over Croatia. Although his performances so far won’t affect Deschamps’ decision. He is concerned Pogba may struggle to regain fitness after knee surgery.

A big doubt

Pogba has not played a single game for Juventus this season after returning to the club on a free transfer from Manchester United. Pogba tore a meniscus in his right knee during pre-season training with the Italian club in July. After another collapse in training, the decision to operate was made in early September. An eight-week recovery period leaves his participation in Qatar in limbo.

The form of the players can greatly affect the World Cup tournament, especially when the game is played in mid-season. This creates additional pressure for the players as they will have little preparation time this year. This means that it would be unwise to bet on a player’s fitness.

And when the player is as influential as Pogba, the absence is felt the most. It can also affect betting odds. France’s loss could be Australia’s gain. The two nations meet in the first round of Group D on November 22. Traditionally, the tournament is very popular among those who like to bet on soccer world cups. France are -250 favorites to win Group D with Caesars Sportsbook. While the Australians are at the top of the group at +1200. The Socceroos are an established team with over-30s forming the backbone of the team, with 30-year-old captain Mathew Ryan in goal, Trent Sainsbury, Aziz Behich and Bailey Wright in defence, Celtics Aaron Mooy in midfield and Melbourne City -Forward Mathew Leckie up front.

Australia will hope to avoid defeat by France and Pogba’s absence from the World Cup would give the Australians a boost. The route to reaching the knockout stages would then be via a win over Tunisia to set up a crucial final group game against Denmark.

A growing injury list

Deschamps already has injury concerns in midfield. N’Golo Kante is currently out with a hamstring injury but is expected to be back in action soon. Bayern Munich winger Kingsley Coman is struggling with injuries.

Still, Deschamps has jumped at the opportunity to call up Monaco midfielder Youssouf Fofana and with players of the caliber of Real Madrid midfielders Eduardo Camavinga and Aurélien Tchouaméni, Deschamps can afford to be strict in his demands on Pogba.

However, replacing Pogba’s experience will be much more difficult. The ex-Manchester United midfielder, who left the club after Cristiano Ronaldo returned to the Premier League, has 91 caps and scored 11 goals, while Tchouaméni has 12 caps for France and Camavinga has just three caps.

Deschamps must also tread carefully to avoid the kind of dispute that has marred international preparations. Last year, a feud between Kylian Mbappé and Olivier Giroud ahead of Euro 2020 threatened to escalate into a full-scale feud after Giroud publicly criticized the Paris Saint-Germain striker. Any sign of preferential treatment for Pogba could pose a threat to the team’s unity in Qatar.

With Paul Pogba under intense pressure to prove his fitness to Didier Deschamps and earn a place in the World Cup squad, it could be that one of the next generations of French midfielders will seize the opportunity to emerge as the youngest long-time high-profile French midfielder at the this year’s World Cup in Qatar.

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