4 July 2014 21:00
Didier Deschamps believes France did all they could to beat Germany in their 1-0 FIFA World Cup quarter-final defeat.
Mats Hummels’ header in the 12th minute proved the decisive blow in a somewhat turgid affair at the Maracana on Friday, as Germany advanced to their fourth successive World Cup semi-final.
France seemed surprisingly cautious in their bid to conjure an equaliser, only pressing forward with any urgency in the final 15 minutes.
The closest they came was deep into stoppage time when Karim Benzema fired in a left-footed shot from a tight angle that Manuel Neuer parried away to safety with a strong wrist.
And Deschamps insisted that his side had done everything possible to at least force extra-time.
“I think we did what we had to – hustle,” he said.
“We had opportunities, but they are a team that has more experience than us.
“They managed their lead. We had an opponent who was of a higher level today.
“Even if we had the desire and ambition, there was not a huge difference between us and the German team, but it is they who are in the semi-finals.”