France did not have much problem in dispatching Honduras in their opening Group E game at the 2014 World Cup finals on Sunday.
Les Bleus were in control of the proceedings at the Estadio Beira-Rio in Porto Alegre and eased to a 3-0 victory over the Central American team.
Karim Benzema bagged a brace for the 1998 World Cup winners and Noel Valladares scored an own goal, as Didier Deschamps’ side opened their Brazil 2014 campaign in style.
However, Honduras made some rather nasty challenges and tackles, and were very physical. Football is a contact sport and is physical in nature, but Luis Fernando Suarez’s players were lunging in challenges that they should not have.
Wilson Palacios was sent off for a second bookable offence just before half time, and even in the second period, his teammates did not stop being physical.
In their warm-up game against England in Miami, Honduras were similarly physical and dangerous in their approach, leading captain Steven Gerrard to lament: ‘I thought there were some horrific tackles for a friendly. I got caught with a bad one’.
And now, France international midfielder Yohan Cabaye has said that he understands why the Liverpool captain and legend was so critical about Honduras’ approach.
‘We had seen some videos’, the Paris Saint-Germain star told L’Equipe. ‘Steven Gerrard complained. Now I understand better why’.
Honduras’ next encounter is against Ecuador on June 20, and it will be interesting to observe how they approach that clash. Perhaps, Los Catrachos were physical against England and France because they knew that they were against superior opposition and wanted to intimidate them.