Yohan Cabaye admits that Steven Gerrard will be the man France fear the most when they face England on Monday.
The 26-year-old has seen the England captain at close quarters during his excellent first season in the Premier League at Newcastle, and is wary of the damage he could do to French prospects.
Cabaye has a good chance of facing Gerrard in Donetsk's Donbass Arena with Yann M'Vila struggling to be fit, and he sees combatting the Liverpool player as key to his own team's chances.
"Who do we fear most? Steven Gerrard is a very important player, very powerful and an inspirational player, a leader," he says.
"He is the soul of this team, the captain, and will be like a king in this game.
"He can be very aggressive going forward but defensively he is also important. It is important to try and nullify him.
"But England have some good young players and I've also been impressed by Danny Welbeck."
One player Cabaye will not have to contend with on Monday is Wayne Rooney, suspended for England's first two fixtures after his sending off in Montenegro.
The Manchester United star's absence is one that Cabaye is keen for France to make the most of.
"Rooney is a player of great quality and will be a great miss for them," he added.
"It is significant for us as well as for England that he will not be there on Monday.
"Some people say we are favourites but the English team, even with their injuries recently, is very strong and Ukraine will be as well at home.
"But we will try to win with our style of play. Personally I am ready for the battle and a good result on Monday will help to build confidence."