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France need to ‘move the cursor’ closer to goal says Deschamps

DUESSELDORF, Germany : Scoring goals remains a concern for France as they prepare to play Belgium in the last 16 at the European Championship on Monday, coach Didier Deschamps said on the eve of the clash.

No French player has scored in open play in their last four matches – a warm-up friendly against Canada and three group games in Germany, where they beat Austria with an own goal and drew 1-1 with Poland after a Kylian Mbappe penalty.

"It's not the group matches anymore. It's a new competition within the competition," Deschamps told a press conference on Sunday.

"You have to be efficient. To win matches, you have to score. That’s not done by snapping your fingers, but you need to move the cursor (closer to goal)."

French media have speculated extensively over the tactical approach that the coach is expected to choose for Monday in what should be a tough tussle against their neighbours.

“I make sure to field a team that seems to me to have the best ability to put the opponent in difficulty by being solid defensively," added Deschamps.

“I don't change for the sake of changing, but I can make modifications. The important thing for me is the objective of placing all the players in the best situation,” he said.

At the last Euros, France, then the world champions, went out in the last 16 on penalties to Switzerland.

“That was painful and we want to do everything so that it doesn't happen again. We have a place in the quarter-finals to aim for," said Deschamps.

“Above all, we’ve had the success of having won a lot of knockout matches inside 90 minutes. Sure, we’re practising penalties but my goal is not to go that far.

“It remains football, a balance of power. We're going to make sure that only one person has a smile at the end and