Bayern Munich defender Benjamin Pavard was one of France’s heroes during their 2018 World Cup run in Russia, but the defender has fallen out of favor with the French in the last few months. Critics and fans are starting to look past his wonder-strike against Argentina and point out flaws in Pavard’s game.
There was a time when French supporters would sing chants of Pavard’s legendary half-volley against Argentina but that time seems to have ended. Pavard had always been criticized for his defensive flaws, but never anything too bad. However, as more and more flaws come out in the French defender’s game, Pavard has been subject to serious scrutiny in recent months.
In Bavaria, things have been anything but perfect as Pavard has been lacking both defensively and offensively and recently took a horrible red card against Greuther Fürth. Pavard has just come off an underwhelming performance at Euro 2020, but it was his performance against Spain that made Paul Pogba erupt and confront the Bayern Munich defender. Paul Pogba was quick to criticize Pavard’s defending while Pavard insulted Pogba just as quickly during their heated discussion.
Just moments after this feud, Pavard was substituted off and visibly upset. There is some serious tension within this French squad and the rumors of this beef seem to be true. Regardless, France managed to win the Nations League anyways but poses some serious questions about squad chemistry heading towards the World Cup in Qatar.
It is evident that Deschamps is not fully satisfied with Benji’s performances and the 25-year-old needs to make strides towards improvement. Luckily for Pavard, right-back is the one position that France isn’t bursting with talent in so he will continue to have a chance to fight for his position.
For the moment, the French staff maintains its confidence in the Bayern defender although some of his teammates would clearly disagree. Pavard has had some serious shortcomings for France and Bayern Munich in recent times so there is some serious work for him to regain that former status.
Despite his poor performances, it is mind-blowing that Pavard is still starting for arguably the best international team and the best club in Europe.