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France squad pose for team photo ahead of Euro qualifiers 

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Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappe can’t resist a dribble as France squad pose for team photo ahead of Euro qualifiers

  • The France squad poses for a photograph ahead of their Euro 2020 campaign
  • World champions begin qualification bid with a trip to Moldova on Friday
  • They then host Iceland on Monday night in their second Group H qualifier
  • Didier Deschamps’ squad appear to be in high spirits ahead of double-header 

France marked the beginning of a new qualification campaign with a team photograph as the reigning world champions start on the road to Euro 2020.

Dider Deschamps and his squad kitted themselves out and posed for a team group photograph at their Clairefontaine training base on Wednesday.

Hotshot striker Kylian Mbappe couldn’t resist getting a feel of the ball as he practised his dribbling in front of his team-mates and the coaching staff.

Kylian Mbappe couldn't resist dribbling the ball as the France squad posed for a team photo

Kylian Mbappe couldn’t resist dribbling the ball as the France squad posed for a team photo

Paris Saint-Germain striker Mbappe will be central to France's Euro 2020 qualifying campaign

Paris Saint-Germain striker Mbappe will be central to France's Euro 2020 qualifying campaign

Paris Saint-Germain striker Mbappe will be central to France’s Euro 2020 qualifying campaign

Paul Pogba (bottom right) looks quizzical while Moussa Sissoko (top right) and Layvin Kurzawa (top left) look amused by something that's been said

Paul Pogba (bottom right) looks quizzical while Moussa Sissoko (top right) and Layvin Kurzawa (top left) look amused by something that's been said

Paul Pogba (bottom right) looks quizzical while Moussa Sissoko (top right) and Layvin Kurzawa (top left) look amused by something that’s been said

Olivier Giroud (left) amuses Florian Thauvin and Kingsley Coman as the picture is taken

Olivier Giroud (left) amuses Florian Thauvin and Kingsley Coman as the picture is taken

Olivier Giroud (left) amuses Florian Thauvin and Kingsley Coman as the picture is taken

France goalkeepers (left to right) Steve Mandanda, Hugo Lloris and Alphonse Areola

France goalkeepers (left to right) Steve Mandanda, Hugo Lloris and Alphonse Areola

France goalkeepers (left to right) Steve Mandanda, Hugo Lloris and Alphonse Areola

Coach Didier Deschamps (right) with Raphael Varane (left) and Antoine Griezmann (centre)

Coach Didier Deschamps (right) with Raphael Varane (left) and Antoine Griezmann (centre)

Coach Didier Deschamps (right) with Raphael Varane (left) and Antoine Griezmann (centre)

France now turn their attentions closer to home as they begin their Euro 2020 campaign

France now turn their attentions closer to home as they begin their Euro 2020 campaign

The final picture. Top Row (Left to right): Tanguy Ndombele, Layvin Kurzawa, Benjamin Pavard, Moussa Sissoko, Steve Mandanda, Hugo Lloris, Alphonse Areola, Kurt Zouma, Presnel Kimpembe, Djibril Sidibe and Lucas Digne. Middle Row (Left to right): Thomas Lemar, Samuel Umtiti, Paul Pogba, goalkeeper coach Franck Raviot, assistant coach Guy Stephan, fitness trainer Gregory Dupont, Olivier Giroud, Florian Thauvin and Kingsley Coman. Bottom Row (Left to right): Nabil Fekir, Raphael Varane, Antoine Griezmann, head coach Didier Deschamps, Blaise Matuidi, Kylian Mbappe and N’Golo Kante

And there was clearly a jovial atmosphere as France prepare to take on Moldova on Friday and Iceland on Monday in their opening two European Championship qualifiers.

Spirits are high in the French camp and little wonder given qualification Group H has paired them with Iceland, Turkey, Albania, Moldova and Andorra and should see them reach next year’s finals with plenty to spare.

The top two in each of the 10 qualifying groups progress automatically to the finals tournament, which will be staged at 12 venues across Europe rather than just one host nation.

Mbappe is mobbed by his team-mates after scoring a goal in training on Tuesday

Mbappe is mobbed by his team-mates after scoring a goal in training on Tuesday

Mbappe is mobbed by his team-mates after scoring a goal in training on Tuesday

Paul Pogba jokes with Antoine Griezmann in training as France prepare for their Moldova trip

Paul Pogba jokes with Antoine Griezmann in training as France prepare for their Moldova trip

Paul Pogba jokes with Antoine Griezmann in training as France prepare for their Moldova trip

Samuel Umtiti (left) and Mbappe joke around in training at France's Clairefontaine base

Samuel Umtiti (left) and Mbappe joke around in training at France's Clairefontaine base

Samuel Umtiti (left) and Mbappe joke around in training at France’s Clairefontaine base

Manchester United star Pogba on the run during a training match ahead of the qualifiers

Manchester United star Pogba on the run during a training match ahead of the qualifiers

Manchester United star Pogba on the run during a training match ahead of the qualifiers

France coach Didier Deschamps takes charge of a training session this week

France coach Didier Deschamps takes charge of a training session this week

France coach Didier Deschamps takes charge of a training session this week

France qualifiers  

Friday Moldova (A)

Monday Iceland (H)

June 8 Turkey (A)

June 11 Andorra (A)

September 7 Albania (H)

September 10 Andorra (H)

October 11 Iceland (A)

October 14 Turkey (H)

November 14 Moldova (H)

November 17 Albania (A) 

France did actually draw 2-2 with Iceland in a friendly match back in October, amid a UEFA Nations League campaign that saw them finish behind Holland.

They will head to Moldova without Manchester United striker Anthony Martial, who withdrew from the squad earlier this week after suffering a right knee injury.

Martial sustained the injury during United’s 2-1 defeat to Wolverhampton Wanderers in the FA Cup quarter-final on Saturday evening.

It is a frustrating blow for Martial, who had been recalled by Deschamps for the first time in a year off the back of a positive season at United.

Thomas Lemar of Atletico Madrid was called into the squad in his place.

 

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