It’s difficult to come away from the positive side of the Blues’ lackluster performance this Thursday against the Uruguayans (27-12). Only Sekou Macalou delivered a match that lived up to the ambitions of this French XV which dreams of a first global coronation. Blues who were picked up cold from the start by the passion and enthusiasm of the “Teros”. “We were surprised with this first try which arrived very quickly in the match. We found ourselves chasing the score, recognizes the third row of the Blues. It was their opening match. We knew they were going to be hungry. We did not underestimate this team. We knew it was going to be complicated. We got the scenario we expected.”

The big downside of the evening? The indiscipline of the usual understudies of the XV of France who conceded 15 penalties in this meeting. Far too much at the international level. “Our indiscipline put them in the game. Our mistakes made them come to our camp and impose their rhythm, recognizes the Stade Français Paris player. If we hadn’t made so many mistakes, the match would have been totally different.”

From the start of the match, Sekou Macalou, placed in the lanes of the French attack, nevertheless stood out, multiplying the races and gaining numerous meters. Before getting bogged down in the “tempo lento” dictated by the South Americans. “Yes, there was a false rhythm. We fell into the trap of the Uruguayans, he regrets. We should have packed the meeting to try to tire them out. Once we had our hands on the ball, we had a way to score behind. » Instead, the scrums kept coming: 22 in total! “We fell into the trap of the Uruguayans. They’ve been waiting for this! But I don’t think we suffered in this sector, says the French flanker. We were very dominant but we were not rewarded. These are arbitration questions. It was 50/50. We are frustrated.”

A usual substitute, particularly because of his versatility which allows him to play on the wing, Sekou Macalou nevertheless scored points in Lille. In 11 carries, he gained 106 yards, the best total of the game. He could even have scored a try at the end of the match, after an 80m rush, but the video refereeing logically decided otherwise. What did he think of his performance? “Honestly, I’m waiting for the coaches to come back to really know.” And to recognize that the Blues did not panic: “We were calm, because we knew that if we accelerated we could get back in front. And that’s what happened. The problem is that we weren’t able to capitalize on enough chances.”

A lack of realism that will have to be corrected next week, against another “small team”, Namibia. “Uruguay was a great team. They had a game plan, they countered us in the combat zones. We’re going to have roughly the same match next week, he warns. I think we learned a lot of lessons from this match and we will try not to repeat the same mistakes.” Twice in a row would be a real task…