France boss Didier Deschamps enforces ban ahead of England clash

England beat Senegal to set up World Cup quarter-final against holders France

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France boss Didier Deschamps has revealed he has banned his players from wearing jewellery at the World Cup ahead of Saturday’s showdown with England. Barcelona defender Jules Kounde wore a necklace in his side’s 3-1 win over Poland yesterday, with the defender then taking it off after 42 minutes. It is currently against FIFA rules for players to wear such items during matches.

France beat Poland 3-1 on Sunday, with Kylian Mbappe bagging a brace to take his World Cup goal tally to five and Olivier Giroud also netting to become the country’s all-time record scorer.

There were bizarre scenes during the game, however, when a French assistant removed Kounde’s necklace as the 24-year-old attempted to take a throw in.

Referee Jesus Valenzuela spotted the defender wearing the jewellery and Deschamps, speaking after the win, has now revealed he’s banned players from wearing similar items.

“He [Kounde] shouldn’t have started the game with that on,” said the 54-year-old.

“I don’t know what he has on the necklace, but I know he’s a bit superstitious and he wears it in training too.

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“I don’t know what the necklace meant to him, but I told him he was very lucky that I didn’t catch him in front of me at that moment.

“The referee told us that as soon as there was a stoppage in play, he had to take it off. If I had seen him wearing it in the dressing room, I’d have told him to take it off before he even went onto the pitch.

“You can’t play football wearing sunglasses or a watch or ring. It’s not allowed.

“I thought he’d taken it off, but he hadn’t. It’s our fault, our mistake, and it won’t happen again.”

Next up for France is a tantalising fixture against England.

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The Three Lions have been in fine form in Qatar so far this winter, winning three of their four matches.

England were too strong for Senegal in their round of 16 clash, with Jordan Henderson, Harry Kane and Bukayo Saka all finding the net at the Al Bayt Stadium.

And Gareth Southgate, speaking afterwards, revealed how the Three Lions would try and stop France and Mbappe from running riot.

“Of course (Mbappe) is a world-class player and has already delivered big moments in this tournament and in previous tournaments,” he said.

“But there’s also, I think (Antoine) Griezmann is now over 70 consecutive games for France and I think he’s also a phenomenal player.

“We know Olivier Giroud so well and they have outstanding young midfield players as well.

“So, everywhere you look when we’re studying France at every age group, they have an incredible depth of talent in every position.

“It’s a huge test but one that we’re really looking forward to and it’s a great challenge for our team now.”

England have faced France at two major tournaments in the past 20 years.

They lost 2-1 to Les Bleus at Euro 2004, with Zinedine Zidane netting a late double ahead Frank Lampard had put England ahead.

And the two teams played out a 1-1 draw at Euro 2012, with Joleon Lescott and Samir Nasri both on target.

England also lost 3-2 to France when they last met at a friendly back in 2017, with Ousmane Dembele scoring the winner that day. 

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