Dumoulin backed by Fofana

Date published: October 15 2015

France centre Wesley Fofana has praised his midfield partner Alexandre Dumoulin as they prepare to face the All Blacks on Saturday.

Philippe Saint-André has opted to bring in the Racing 92 centre in place of Mathieu Bastareaud in his starting XV, for only Dumoulin's eighth cap since making his debut last November.

"What I like about him is his capacity to open the game for the players around him. He is also an excellent kicker," Fofana said.

"As far as position goes, I think I will probably be at 13 myself."

New Zealand have been partially for criticised for failing to quite find top gear so far at the World Cup after a straightforward group stage, aside from their opening game against Argentina.

Fofana believes the defending champions look relaxed and stressed the importance of France executing when it came to their kicking game.

He added: "They look like they are playing with ease, like (Dan) Carter, who is at the top of his game. They switch perfectly between their forwards and their backs.

"We will need to be selective so that we don't exhaust ourselves. In counter-attacks, they are the best. The less we have to defend, the less tired we will get."

The 27-year-old added that the squad had done their best to not revisit France's shock quarter-final win over the All Blacks at the same venue eight years ago.

"Inevitably, we hear about it. There are videos everywhere! But I'm not going to watch them all," he revealed. 

"Frédérick Michalak's knock-on did not really strike me. But if it's the same on Saturday, all the best for us."