Bixente Lizarazu: Re-inclusion of Franck Ribery, Eric Abidal & Patrice Evra the main reason for France's dip in form

The former Bayern Munich star believes that Les Bleus' less than impressive performances in recent months are partly down to the return of the 2010 World Cup rebels
Former France international Bixente Lizarazu has voiced his opinion that the re-inclusion of players such as Franck Ribery, Eric Abidal and Patrice Evra has damaged the morale in the national side.

Les Bleus have struggled to find their best form in recent games after an impressive start under new head coach Laurent Blanc, and Lizarazu feels that the return of the players who were suspended or dropped after the 2010 World Cup has played a crucial role in their dip in form.

"I felt that the team were making progress during the first part of the qualifiers, but after that it’s been a bit of a rollercoaster ride, featuring some quality displays and other poor ones," Lizarazu was quoted as saying on the official Fifa website.

"There have been a lot of factors. First of all was the re-inclusion of those players who were suspended after the 2010 World Cup, which was no easy task for Laurent Blanc. I think that has caused a few problems in terms of morale in the squad.

"Of course that’s not the only reason, but it’s played a part. First of all those players came back with a lot of pressure on their shoulders, and that meant they didn’t perform well straight away."

France are currently preparing for an international friendly against Belgium in Paris on Tuesday evening.

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