France news

Abidal: I'd be happy to captain France

August 29, 2013
By Ian Holyman, France Correspondent

Monaco defender Eric Abidal has said he would happily take on the captaincy of the France national side if Didier Deschamps decided to take the armband from Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.

Eric Abidal
GettyImagesAbidal captains Monaco, whom he joined in the summer.

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Lloris, 26, has led the team since Laurent Blanc's tenure as national coach, continuing in the role when Deschamps was appointed following Euro 2012.

However, while Lloris does not captain Spurs, Abidal leads Monaco -- despite having only joined the club this summer -- and told RMC: "I've never refused the captain's armband, regardless of the coach.

"Didier Deschamps has a huge amount of experience. He was captain himself. It's a question that you have to ask him, but I think Hugo Lloris is an excellent captain. But if he wants to give me it, I'll accept it willingly."

Abidal is expected to be named in the France squad named on Thursday for the World Cup qualifiers in Georgia and Belarus. It is a remarkable comeback for the defender, who underwent a liver transplant between appearing in a friendly against Germany in February 2012 and returning to the squad to win his 62nd cap in a friendly draw in Belgium earlier this month.

"I'm very happy to be back in the French national side. It's come around very quickly, but nothing is certain. I need to have a great season, and why not dream of Brazil 2014?” he said.

“I prepared myself well to get back into the French team. I had a very good pre-season with Monaco. I hope we're going to qualify -- the most important thing is to get there. That's our primary objective. The French team has a huge amount of quality."

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