France coach Didier Deschamps said Wednesday he had no plans to expedite Franck Ribery’s return from injury while also playing down concerns over the fitness of Karim Benzema.
Ribery was rested for Tuesday’s 4-0 victory over Norway at the Stade de France, the first of three pre-World Cup friendlies for Les Bleus, with the Bayern Munich winger still bothered by a minor back problem.
“He is still on his tailored training programme. I’m counting on him once he’s fit again, and the sooner that is the better. It’s not a huge problem but we’re not going to rush him back. He’s been carrying the knock for almost a month.”
Real Madrid striker Benzema suffered a left adductor muscle strain towards the end of the Spanish season but played in his club’s 4-1 victory over city rivals Atletico in Saturday’s Champions League final.
“He played a good hour (on Saturday),” said Deschamps.
“The important thing is that he hasn’t hurt it again. There is still time to recover, so I’m not worried right now.”
Both Benzema and Real teammate Raphael Varane are expected to join up with the rest of the France squad later on Wednesday at the team’s training base in Clairefontaine.