France lack a winning mentality, admits Sagnol

The former Bayern Munich defender feels the national team's problems are down to mental issues, and realises it will be hard to change the side's mode of thinking
Willy Sagnol has put France's disappointing performances at big tournaments in recent years down to the lack of a winning mentality.

Les Bleus were eliminated by Spain in the quarter-finals at Euro 2012, while they failed to survive the group stage at the 2010 World Cup, and the former full-back feels cultural issues are one of the reasons behind their early exits.

"We need winners. That is what is lacking in French culture generally, and it's not easy to develop," Sagnol was quoted as saying by France Football.

"While you can improve a player's technical ability and help him evolve, it is hard to change the mentality.

"Once they are in a high-level structure, that must be mandatory. It must have the same importance as technical education."

Sagnol made over 50 international appearances for France between 2000 and 2008.