Full-back Mathieu Debuchy produced a calm and composed display as France progressed into the quarter-finals of Euro 2012, despite suffering a rare defeat against Sweden. Raz Mirza takes a look at the Lille defender's contribution in what proved to be a tough encounter.
By Razwan Mirza - Tweet me: @RazMirza. Last Updated: June 19, 2012 11:30pm
Mathieu Debuchy: The right-back stayed cool on a tough night for France
French fancy Mathieu Debuchy is one of those unheralded names currently in Laurent Blanc's Les Bleus side.
He has only recently been linked with some of Europe's biggest clubs and is being closely watched during Euro 2012.
The 26-year-old, with only a handful of caps to his name under France coach Laurent Blanc, has so far impressed in Group D games with England and Ukraine.
However, he was given his sternest test yet, as Sweden upset Les Bleus 2-0 at the Olympic Stadium in Kiev.
Debuchy, who is famed for his high work-rate, passing, crossing and that rare balance of being able to defend and attack in equal measure, was fully tested as he came up against an attack-minded Martin Olsson.
The right-back stayed calm under pressure and exuded confidence while others around him struggled to find their form.
He clearly enjoys playing as high up the field as possible and attacks well, providing a number of decent crosses throughout the match, but defensively, he was also very rigorous and produced some solid tackling when he needed to.
The Fretin-born star hasn't emerged as one of his country's best full-backs for no reason and could move on this summer after nine years and over 200 Ligue One appearances for his club Lille.
Indeed, head coach Rudi Garcia recently confirmed that Newcastle United have made a bid for their full-back in the region of £4million, but the French club believe he is worth more than £6million.
But he is also being closely followed by Paris St-Germain, Bayern Munich and UEFA Champions League winners Chelsea, according to reports.
Debuchy has experienced everything he possibly can at Les Dogues and may well feel that if he puts in an equally confident display in their quarter-final clash against Spain on Saturday night, his stock may rise further.