France assistant coach Alain Boghossian says Franck Ribery and Samir Nasri are set to be available to face Spain in Saturday’s quarter-final after an injury scare and played down the dressing-room argument that took place following their defeat to Sweden.
Nasri, who sustained a knee injury during the 2-0 loss on Tuesday, took no part in training on Wednesday, while Ribery began the session but swiftly withdrew to the team hotel after appearing to have hurt his left foot.
Boghossian, though, said on Thursday that there were no significant problems and the pair were fit to return to training.
“They are doing very well,” he said. “The day after the game there is fatigue. It is always difficult. They were rested yesterday to treat minor injuries, but everyone will certainly be ready for training this afternoon.”
After the performance against Sweden, France could ill afford to lose two such important players for the match against the defending champions. Laurent Blanc confirmed that things had become “heated” in the dressing room following that defeat, though Boghossian has said the arguments have now been put to bed.
"The fire's been put out,” he said. “Nothing's broken. Everyone said what they had to say. We all had a chat over lunch when things had calmed down, then we had a little meeting after dinner."
Boghossian stressed that the situation was “not at all comparable" to the 2010 World Cup, when the players, then under Raymond Domenech’s charge, went on strike.
He added: "These things happen. We shouldn't pull the wool over our eyes. Tensions are normal when you lose. If everyone was smiling after that defeat, we would have raised our voices even more.
"I think it's a positive thing, because at least things are clear between us now. There were some [verbal] altercations, some exchanges. It's like when you're in a relationship: if you brush things under the carpet then things will explode."
Boghossian was said to have been involved in an argument with defender Philippe Mexes, whose yellow card against Sweden ruled him out of the Spain game.
"Philippe and I had a tactical exchange," he said. "He got his yellow card high up the pitch, which really didn't serve any purpose, but then again, if everyone had shown the same commitment as him, maybe we wouldn't have put in such a performance."
On a reported argument between Blanc and Hatem Ben Arfa, Boghossian added: "It wasn't that much of a clash. It was a discussion, an exchange, and the two people concerned explained things to each other. They shook hands and there's no problem."
While Boghossian is confident the air has been cleared, the lack of leadership within the France squad remains a concern. He said he does not want captain Hugo Lloris to begin raising his voice – “It’s never good to play a role” – but suggested the absence of a vocal presence is an issue.
"No one stands out as a leader on the pitch. The problem won't be solved between now and Saturday," he said. "You can't just click your fingers and say, 'Let's hope a leader comes along', or point the finger at someone and designate him as that leader. Either the leader comes naturally, or if there isn't one then you do things another way."© ESPN