Qatar coach: Team must shut out ‘noise’ in World Cup opener
QATAR’S top manager has urged his team to shut out the “noise” in the opening game of the World Cup this week and focus on the game.
Olivier Giroud, who captained France’s team at the 2012 tournament in Brazil, will lead Qatar’s squad in the opening match against Australia at the Brisbane Cricket Ground (BCG) on Thursday (AEST), but he says the team can only focus on the game when the loud-mouths don’t get in the way.
“This is a big game for us.
It’s a nice opener against Australia and I hope we do well,” the Arsenal striker said.
“We are going to play this game against Australia, against the noise, and I hope we play well.
“I hope the noise doesn’t affect the rest of the tournament, but it’s the opening game and the World Cup and you need to focus.
“Our players have done fantastic pre-season. They have trained and they have trained very well.
“We will need to play good football and just shut out the noise, shut out the fans.”
Giroud said if his team were to be a threat to the Australians in their opening game, he and his teammates would have a “big game” in them the following day.
“Of course, we will try and build that spirit,” he said.
“We will try to keep the spirit, as well.
“We are going to try and get something out of this game.
“After the game, our boys will talk and decide what happens next.
“We’re going to try and get some confidence back into our team this weekend.”
Giroud, who will wear the captain’s armband for the first time after his team were the only side never to lose the opening game of the World Cup, said his team’s preparations are no less intense than his.