PSA concerned by French breakdown

Date published: September 23 2015

Philippe Saint-André admits France's ball retention was nowhere near good enough after they laboured to victory over Romania.

While les Bleus managed five tries at the Olympic Stadium in their 38-11 win, they were outplayed for large parts of the game, conceding a barely believable eight turnovers in the first half.

Unsurprisingly, that made it hard to break the Romanians down, with their two tries coming when Romania were down to 14 men following a yellow card for Paulica Ion.

They finally enjoyed some success in the final 20 minutes when they started to play with a bit more pace, and Saint-André explained that his plan from the beginning had been to try to play with more tempo.

"The main objective is achieved, we got the win and we got the five points," he said.

"We have nine points from our first two games with just four days rest.

"But (at half-time) I was not so happy. We wanted to put tempo into the game and for 30 minutes we didn't manage more than two phases. They prepared themselves for the last three months, they were physical in the contact area. 

"We know the Romanians are rough and solid, strong at the set-piece. We waited for half an hour before playing with more pace in our game.

"From the moment that the ball carrier doesn't win his individual battle, that the support can't remove the Romanian defender, it's difficult.

"It's difficult for these players. This generation isn't used to playing Romania. I used to play them every year. You have to play with pace. We also have to improve, our discipline wasn't good enough tonight."