International Soccer

Wednesday Kickoff: France wins big, Al Wasl offer Drogba a deal and more

France 1 (Reuters)


If France needed any added confidence before heading into Euro 2012, they got it on Tuesday.

Les Bleus finished off preparations for the upcoming tournament by topping Estonia, 4-0, in a friendly in France. Karim Benzema led the way with a brace, while Franck Ribery and Jeremy Menez eached added a goal of their own.

France may have won the game by a large margin, but it nearly endured a rough start after defender Philipe Mexes fell, allowing Estonia to get a shot off that went just wide of frame in one of the visitors' best chances on the night. Les Bleus regrouped after that, and Ribery scored the winner in the 24th minute.

France kicks off its Euro 2012 campaign on June 11 with a Group D match-up against England.

Here are more stories from around the world:


United Arab Emirates club Al Wasl have made a bid to sign Didier Drogba. The team, which is currently coached by Diego Maradona, has not disclosed how much it has offered the Ivory Coast international. But it did admit that it was less than what he is being offered by a Chinese club. Drogba is strongly being linked with Shaghai Shenhua, where former Chelsea teammate Nicolas Anelka currently plays and former Argentina manager Sergio Batista coaches.


Cardiff City will soon have a new logo and new jersey. The Welsh club confirmed Wednesday that the team would wear red as opposed to their traditional blue next season, and that their current logo with a bluebird on it will change. Cardiff City initially announced these plans in May, but the changes were said to be scrapped after strong opposition towards them. Now it appears, Cardiff City will continue as originally planned.


Norwich City has been given permission by Birmingham City to speak to manager Chris Hughton about their vacant managerial position. The Canaries will have talks with the 53-year-old to see if they can agree to terms after Birmingham reluctantly heeded his request. Norwich is currently without a manager due to Paul Lambert leaving to join Aston Villa.


How far do you see France going in Euro 2012? Wondering what kind of reality TV show could me bade if Drogba were to sign with Maradona and Al Wasl? What do you think of Cardiff City's rebranding plans?

Share your thoughts below.

  • al17

    France could win the damn thing. Yes, I’m serious. Mexes, in my opinion is the weak link in the back line. If someone can exploit his tendency to get caught up, you may be able to rock les Bleus. However, Ribery and Benzema are starting to gel nicely and that’s should worry lots of people playing against them. Not even coutning M’Vila, Remy, Malouda and Nasri who’s also been playing very well. It looks like they may be peaking at the right time or a bit too early but 4 points should get you into the next round from Group D. 6 points will most likely win the group.


  • William the Terror

    How accurate of a barometer is a 4-0 win over Estonia? Might as well have been Flintstonia, featuring the strike tandem of Fred and Barney. How far will they go? Don’t know, but I always root for a total meltdown by both France and Italy. Watching them fail is truly a joy.


  • al17

    Actually very accurate. They did what they were supposed to have done against them. I’ve seen all of their warm up matches at not once did you get the impression that they would not score. The impression I got was that they’re still trying to gel in a few areas and are not far from it. They did what they were supposed to have done against Estonia. Had the result been different then it could be cause for alarm but this French team is a good team with alot of potential.

    Not sure what your issues are with them or Italy but to each his own.


  • AdamFromMich

    It’s as accurate as a 4 goal win over Scotland.

    … Sorry, someone had to say it.


  • Kevin_Amold

    Some people like to see big established sides fail. I sometimes fall into this camp.


  • Old School

    ..or about as accurate as a 2-0 win over Brazil with countless blown calls.

    Sorry, other people have already said it.


  • al17

    Remy just makes them that much better. Rare to have someone these days who can finish in the air or just flat out beat you on the ground. Having he and Benzema on the field at the same time and with Ribery is just Sick. I was really disappointed when he couldn’t play in this summer’s tourney.


  • al17


    If we had the coin in the USA, he’d be here.

    I have no issues with them paying top dollar other than wish it were my beloved Fire.


  • charlie

    Agree. France is picking up at the right time and the offensive arsenal is impressive. The can bring the likes of Giroud, Ben Arfa, Valbuena or Menez from the bench to replace the Ribery, Benzema, Nasri… Very few teams can boast so much talent.

    Mexes is the weak link though and I was hoping that Blanc would make the switch to Koscielny. The gunner is a much better defender than Mexes. Baring a major screw up during the tournament, I doubt that will happen though.


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