Mavuba - No captaincy plans

Deschamps hails leadership qualities of France midfielder

Rio Mavuba: Trying to esstablish himself as a regular in the France team

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Rio Mavuba has played down his captaincy credentials and insisted he is focused only on cementing a place in the France side.

Mavuba made just his eighth senior international appearance in Friday's 1-0 victory over Finland but he has quickly become a key figure under new coach Didier Deschamps.

The Lille midfielder is pleased to have such faith shown in him and has been tipped to one day be named skipper of Les Bleus.

Tottenham Hotspur new boy Hugo Lloris currently wears the armband and Mavuba respects all the senior players in the squad.

"I don't have the credibility of players that have been in the national team for a long time," he told L'Equipe.

"It is up to me to do my best without putting too much pressure on myself.

"I just have eight caps and have just played one good match against Finland. I first want to make a name for myself on the pitch and get in the France team as often as possible.

"Indeed I can feel trust from the coach and technical staff. I don't play with a guillotine on my neck."

Proud

Mavuba added: "When you are at ease in your mind, it helps on the pitch.

"Captaincy? There is Hugo Lloris who is perfectly fulfilling his role, and other key players have been present for a while.

"If it does come one day, I would be very proud and I would take it on, but it is too early to talk about it so far."

Deschamps believes Mavuba, who has been likened to former greats such as Claude Makelele and Jean Tigana, is performing a vital role in midfield.

"He is bringing good balance to the team," said Deschamps. "He doesn't have a lot of caps, but he takes his role very seriously.

"In the heart of the game it is important to have leaders. Rio has to be one of them."