Posted: Tuesday 27th May 2014 at 11:11 am

Mathieu Debuchy unmoved by Bacary Sagna competition for France


The Newcastle United defender is expected to start his country’s friendly against Norway on Tuesday but could face a fight for the right-back berth from Arsenal man Sagna.

With three friendlies to come between now and France’s World Cup opener against Honduras on June 15, Debuchy says he is simply focusing on his own performances rather than worrying about Sagna’s form.

“You ask me how the competing is going, if I think about playing, what I think of his game but I’m focusing first of all on me,” he told L’Equipe .

“I try to give my all, Bacary too, then after this the coach will make his choice. In football, everything goes very fast.”

While Debuchy will come into the World Cup off the back of a disappointing few months at club level, Sagna ended Arsenal’s domestic campaign with an FA Cup winner’s medal.

The former Lille man feels certain criticism levelled at him since his move to St James’ Park has been unwarranted and that the style of play at Newcastle has hindered him on the international stage.

“I was a little frustrated (in my first season at Newcastle) because the coach asked me to stay behind while for France, the coach told me to stay high,” he explained.

“If you do not go up enough, people will say that you do not bring enough offensively and if you go up too much, they will say that you are not calm defensively.

“That’s why there will always be critics (but) I still have to make progress on some points.”

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