By Allez les Bleus
January 11 2012
Under new coach Philippe Saint-Andre, France will be hoping that they can take their World Cup form a few steps further in the Six Nations - and anything other than winning the competition outright will be regarded as failure.
The later stages of former boss Marc Lievremont reign were littered with strife, arguments between the coach and the players no doubt affecting their form – but they still didn’t do badly, did they?
Saint-Andre included newcomers Wesley Fofana, a centre with Clermont, and Yoann Maesti, a Toulouse second-row, their first calls when he named his squad for the Six Nations.
Another second-row, former captain Lionel Nallet, has been called in as a late replacement for another Toulouse big man, lock Romain Millo-Chluski, who is out with a shoulder injury.
France start the tournament at home to Italy on February 4 – the fact that they lost this fixture in Rome last season underlines their inconsistency and gives the squad a real incentive to start well.
Backs: Morgan Parra (Clermont), Dimitri Yachvili (Biarritz), François Trinh-Duc (Montpellier), Lionel Beauxis (Toulouse), Maxime Mermoz (Perpignan), Aurélien Rougerie (Clermont), Yann David (Toulouse), Wesley Fofana (Clermont), Maxime Médard (Toulouse), Vincent Clerc (Toulouse), Alexis Palisson (Toulon), Julien Malzieu (Clermont), Clément Poitrenaud (Toulouse).
Forwards: Vincent Debaty (Clermont), Fabien Barcella (Biarritz), Luc Ducalcon (Castres) Jean-Baptiste Poux (Toulouse), William Servat (Toulouse), Dimitri Szarzewski (Stade Français), Nicolas Mas (Perpignan), Pascal Papé (Stade Français), Yoann Maestri (Toulouse), Lional Nallet (Racing Metro), Julien Pierre (Clermont), Julien Bonnaire (Clermont), Yannick Nyanga (Toulouse), Thierry Dusautoir (Toulouse/Captain), Fulgence Ouedraogo (Montpellier), Louis Picamoles (Toulouse), Imanol Harinordoquy (Biarritz).