Blanc defends France tactics
France coach Laurent Blanc has hit back at suggestions that his team lacked adventure in their opening Euro 2012 match, saying opponents England were the ones that stifled the game.
Les Bleus extended their unbeaten run to 22 matches with the 1-1 draw in Donetsk on Monday but were left frustrated by England's tactics, which France defender Patrice Evra claimed mimicked Chelsea's ultra-defensive display against Barcelona in the Champions League. France were clear favourites going into the Group D opener but found themselves a goal down to Joleon Lescott's header and had to fight back for a draw.
The French have been criticised back home for not winning the match, but Blanc defended the attacking intent of his team. He said: "People have said and I read that the French team was not ambitious enough. If France weren't ambitious enough on Monday, what can we say about England's squad? What can be said about that?
"The England team's tactics didn't surprise us. We knew they would play this way, and that they are good on the break. But we controlled the game for 70 minutes, and the other 20 minutes that were England's were down to our own weakness.
"After the goal, the reaction of the French players was good. We didn't do enough to win the match. But we can say that at 1-0 we were thinking we did not start well, we've been punished, now we have to start the Euros properly. And we finally started the Euros with 20 minutes to go."
France play co-hosts Ukraine, who beat Sweden 2-1 in their opening game, on Friday at the Donbass Arena in Donetsk.© ESPN