How Do They Make Les Bleues?

My first book, The Making of Les Bleus, examined in part how France trains elite men’s footballers (and basketballers), for at the time there just wasn’t much archival material on how France trained its elite female footballers.

That’s changed since 1998, when the French Football Federation (FFF) created an elite training center for girls at its renown Institute National du Football (INF) at Clairefontaine, influenced by the same system first forged back in the mid-1970s by Georges Boulogne and Stefan Kovacs for aspiring male players. 

But a lot has changed since the early 2000s when the first wave of female footballers emerged from Clairefontaine, among them legendary icons Laura Georges, Louisa Nécib (Cadamuro), Camille Abily, and Amandine Henry. So: what does the Pôle France Féminin du football look like today? 

Here’s me for The Athletic taking a peek behind the curtain at its incarnation at INSEP, where since October 2014 the country’s elite young footballeuses have trained under Didier Brasse.  PDF here.