Bacary Sagna

Coauthored by Jeremy Roth and David Talpalar


(Courtesy of ESPN)

Sagna, born from Senegalese parents, seems likely to start at right back for Les Bleus this summer. At 33 years of age, Sagna is another older member of the squad, who also boasts great experience at the highest level of football.  He has already been capped 55 times for France, and he is hopeful of adding more this summer.

Sagna started his career at Auxerre in France before transferring to Arsenal in 2007, where he played alongside Koscielny until he left the club in 2014 (ESPN). He quickly established himself as a crucial cog in the Arsenal lineup and helped the side to several years of success before transferring to rivals Manchester City for the 2014-15 season.  Since joining City, Sagna has often been considered second choice to Pablo Zabaleta on the right side of City’s defense, but just last week he started the Manchester side’s 0-0 draw in the Champions League semifinal against Real Madrid, where he lined up opposite of Raphael Varane.

Sagna, often regarded as solid but unspectacular, is a traditional right back, who gets forward to aid in attack when necessary while also proving useful in defense. He is a strong lad for a right back, and more importantly going into the summer, he is willing to put his body on the line for his team, as can be seen below. Similarly to Patrice Evra, he has changed his playing style in recent years to make up for his aging body. Although he has good tactical awareness, he is sometimes naive, going too far forward and getting caught out. Age on the outside of defense for the French could prove an area of weakness against a team with speedy wingers, such as the Belgians.


Sagna lays his body on the line for Arsenal in acrobatic fashion (YouTube)

How to cite this article: “Projected France Starting XI at Euro 2016” Written by Jeremy Roth and David Talpalar (2016), European Cup 2016 Guide, Soccer Politics Blog, Duke University, (accessed on (date)).