Journalist Charles Watts has slammed the France manager Didier Deschamps for not starting Arsenal defender William Saliba at the World Cup.
The winter tournament in Qatar has just begun and Les Blues kicked off their campaign this week with a comfortable 4-1 win over Australia in Group D.
Two goals from former Gunner Olivier Giroud and further efforts from Adrien Rabiot and Kylian Mbappe were enough to seal the three points on the day.
However, France got off to a slow start when their defence was breached after just nine minutes as Craig Goodwin opened the scoring for the Aussies.
And that backline was called into question by Watts on Twitter who expressed his bafflement at the exclusion Arsenal ace of Saliba in favour of other French players.
The journalist wrote: “How on earth is Saliba not in this France defence?”
TIF thoughts on William Saliba and Arsenal…
Saliba has been an impressive figure in the heart of Mikel Arteta’s defensive backline this season. Indeed, he has played every Premier League game so far, earning an average SofaScore rating of 7.05 per game.
What’s more, that form has helped fire Arsenal to the very top of the league and while it was enough to earn the 21-year-old a call-up to the World Cup, it hasn’t placed him in France’s starting XI.
Instead, Deschamps opted to put his faith in Ibrahima Konate and Dayot Upamecano instead. However, it was the attacking qualities of his side that helped them beat Australia, and so he may consider trying to improve the defence in the future.
Perhaps Saliba will get his chance to shine yet.