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Draw forces French back to basics at World Cup
France needs to be more clinical vs Nigeria after 0-0 draw with Ecuador at World Cup
By JEROME PUGMIRE
Associated Press
2014-06-27 03:01 AM

RIBEIRAO PRETO, Brazil (AP) -- France's misfiring performance against Ecuador took some gloss off what had been a strong start from a team being touted as one of the outsiders to win the World Cup.

Although Wednesday's 0-0 draw may have worked in France's favor in terms of pressure -- by calming down the rising expectation level after emphatic wins against Honduras and Switzerland -- the players need to be more clinical in front of goal against Nigeria in their Round-of-16 match.

Striker Olivier Giroud says "we were a bit hit-and-miss but we know what we can do."

France was much more miss than hit, failing to score from 20 shots -- 13 of them on target -- with Giroud himself missing a late close-range header when totally unmarked.

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