Didier Deschamps is adamant he never considered resigning from his post as France head coach prior to their march to a second World Cup title.
Deschamps was under pressure before France’s victorious campaign in Russia, with many suggesting he was not the right man to get the best out of the country’s exciting talent.
Much of the criticism focused on Deschamps’ rather pragmatic tactics and approach, despite boasting a pool of vibrant attackers that is almost unrivalled in international football.
Ahead of the World Cup, Deschamps had to contend with reports linking other coaches – namely Zinedine Zidane – as his replacement, but he insists he has never had any plan to step down of his own accord because of his gratitude to French Football Federation (FFF) president Noel Le Graet.
“I did not think of leaving for two reasons,” he said
Firstly, I am someone who keeps his commitments and make sure I reach the goals that are set for me.
“Secondly, which is also important to me, is a question of trust and respect for my president. From the first moment he counts on me until 2020, [so] I will be there.
“It will be necessary to support me two more years.”
Deschamps and France came in for particularly harsh words from Belgium players after Roberto Martinez’s side were defeated in the World Cup semi-final.
Thibaut Courtois and Kevin De Bruyne were especially unkind in their assessments of France’s style of play, but Deschamps does not find their appraisals to be surprising given their disappointment at defeat.
When you’re a high-level player, you’ve just had a great disappointment, you’ve been eliminated, I can understand that they do not have the clarity, the necessary hindsight,” Deschamps added.
“They do not realise the scope of their words. It’s part of the sport.”