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Monday, October 7, 2013

Deschamps targets two wins this week

France head coach Didier Deschamps has targeted two wins this week to boost his team's ranking ahead of their World Cup qualifying play-off.

Deschamps' side will face Australia in a friendly in Paris on Friday before Finland travels to the French capital for a World Cup qualifier on Tuesday.

France cannot overhaul Spain at the top of Group I in Europe's World Cup but have already secured a berth as the second-placed side for a two-legged play-off next month against one of the runners-up from the other European qualifying groups.

Looking ahead, Deschamps wants France to improve on their FIFA ranking of 25 with wins over Australia and Finland in the hope of being seeded in the play-offs.

"Both games are important because we can get some FIFA points and with what might be waiting for us in November, these points could allow us to be a high seed," Deschamps said.

"Even if the second game will grant us more points than the first but it's mathematics... it's already a preparation for November, even though things can happen before the play-offs, some players may be unavailable."

Deschamps added he has yet to decide, who will start up front against Australia out of Arsenal's Olivier Giroud and Karim Benzema of Real Madrid.

Benzema's popularity in France has fallen as he has not scored for his national team since a friendly versus Estonia at the end of the 2011/12 season, while Giroud has started the 2013/14 campaign with six goals in 11 matches for Arsenal in all competitions.

But Deschamps maintained both strikers are required members of his squad.

"They have two different styles as you know, with different skills, they can both be starters without diminishing our attack but with different qualities," Deschamps said

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