A golden generation in the French national team

A miracle against Turkey and Italy but convincing against Poland, France will play a new final on Sunday 18 September in a major international competition, just one year after losing to the United States at the 2021 Olympics. A new final, and a new chance to bring a second major football title Basketball for French men, and above all a golden opportunity for Gilles Yvan Fournier – Rudy Joubert to write his own history.

At the time of these lines, French basketball remained limited to a championship title, which was won by the famous Gilles Tony Parker at the European Basketball Championship 2013.

TP, Boris Diaw, Florent Pietrus, Mickael Gelabale…many names that will forever be associated with this great saga. Clearly a generation away from all he did to develop the orange ball in France, through selection but also the various courses in the NBA with Tony clearly at the helm of the gondola. But this Sunday, we may see the crowning of the 1992 generation, who lived through the last moments of the Parker era but then took charge of keeping France in the great basketball nations category. Globalism.

Evan Fournier and Rudy Gobert.

They were in the squad for the 2014 World Cup, when France won bronze in Spain, but then had a limited role behind frontrunners Nicolas Batum and Boris Diao. They were also present in 2015 when the Blues once again took third place in the EuroBasket organized in France, in which Rudy really made an appearance. The revelation that also allowed Joubert to be part of Tony Parker’s last dance at the 2016 Rio Olympics, but we also had to wait. The end of the 2010 decade to see this new generation take the lead And write a great new page in French basketball. Now all that is missing is one victory to definitely step out of the shadow of the previous generation, and have your own story to tell.

Image source: EuroSport

This story, it actually started three years ago, and it already has very beautiful chapters.

World Cup 2019, Dongguan (China). The Blues beat Team USA in the quarter-finals, the unbeaten ones for at least 13 years in major international competitions. Historic victory for French basketball that never defeated Rex at the World Cup or at the Olympic Games, and a resounding achievement for Fournier (22 points) and Rudy (21 points, 16 rebounds, 3 blocks), the enforcers of the Americans on this glorious day of September. the following ? A very disappointing defeat against Argentina, but still a bronze medal in the end.

Olympic Games, 2021, Tokyo (Japan). The Blues begin the competition with another success against the United States, and this time we’re not talking about Team USA’s Team Z. On the other hand, there is Kevin Durant, Damien Lillard, and Jason Tatum. But on the ground, there are Vavani (28 points), Gobert (14 points, 9 rebounds) and Nando de Colo (13 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists), who all lead EDF towards a prestigious victory. A victory that marks the beginning of a great journey, made up of legendary moments like Nicholas Batum’s block in the last second against Slovenia or Evan’s dedication to horse riding, which is interspersed with the dream of a struggle against the Rican on the largest stage in world basketball. Kevin Durant ends up blocking the way to Vincent Colette’s men in the final, but it’s clear that the Blues can hold their heads high with their status as vice Olympic champions.

Those moments will never be forgotten. Because of the victory over the United States in basketball in a major international competition, there are very few countries that can boast of it. Because a bronze – even if it ends up in the sock – remains an important line on the list. Because an Olympic silver medal can be worn with pride. But if we’ve learned one thing by living through all these feelings, it’s that the 1992 generation is over-ambitious and it’s not the type to settle for in second place, no matter how honorable that may be.

Do you remember Yvan Fournier’s speech after losing to the United States in the Olympic final?

“Obviously disappointing but there are a lot of lessons to be learned. Every year we go up a step, and our target now is the European Championship.”

we are here.

Bronze in the 2019 World Cup, silver in the Tokyo Olympics, gold in the European Basketball Championship 2022? It looks very good, but before that there is still a match to be won against the eternal Spanish contender. As so often in the past, La Roja finds itself once again on the road to the blues, but for the Fournier-Gobert generation it is much more than just another chapter in the legendary rivalry. Because if the latter started more than a decade ago and simply brought us unforgettable confrontations, this Euro final is undoubtedly the best opportunity for the current France squad to write its own legend.

Without wanting to get into the game of comparisons or opposing the current generation with the current generation of TP, a second European Champion title in 2022 might seem like a validation for Blues Fournier – Gobert’s release. Validate their talent, validate the culture currently prevailing in the French team, and validate with regard to the participation of its current leaders, namely Favani in attack and Rudy in defence. Without Nico Batum and Nando de Colo deciding to skip the European Championships in Germany, it’s time for the hairstylist from Charenton and the giant from Saint Quentin to officially take the armband from their peak stature. NBA player pointedto be as truly in a guide’s uniform on the ground as it is on the outside.

The responsibilities they bear today despite the ups and downs the Blues have gone through since the competition began in early September. Thanks to Guerschon Yabusele playing perhaps the best basketball of his career, but also players who have advanced in time like Thomas Heurtel, Terry Tarpey and a few others, Evan-Rudy’s generation is just 40 minutes away from playing a completely special place for itself in basketball history. French basket. And why not become the most beautiful of all generations at the 2024 Olympic title event in Paris.

Of course we haven’t gotten there yet. Spain has shattered a lot of our dreams over the past fifteen years, so let’s not put the cart before the bulls as they say. But one thing is for sure, the 1992 generation symbolized by Yvan Fournier and Rudi Joubert writes a very impressive page in French basketball, which has already begun to be written in the 2019 World Cup and which should be sealed with a title in a major international competition. Favan, Rudy, it’s your time!

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