Soccer-France are in 'group of death' at Euros, says Ben Yedder

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(Reuters) - France striker Wissam Ben Yedder said the reigning world champions are in the toughest group at the European Championship and that they must make a strong start to their campaign against Germany in Tuesday's opener.

France, who defeated Croatia to lift the 2018 World Cup, are in Group F alongside title holders Portugal, four-time world champions Germany and 37th ranked Hungary.

"It's the group of death. There are really good teams," said Ben Yedder.

"We are going to start the competition with a lot of energy. We are really impatient to start the competition and we are going to give it our maximum.

"We have a really big game as a starting point and we know that we have to be solid together for the first match."

Defender Benjamin Pavard said France face a tough challenge against the Germans, who will be playing in front of their home crowd in Munich.

"The first match is very exciting against Germany," Pavard said. "It is not going to be an easy game against a very good German team. We are not going to put any pressure on ourselves."

Les Bleus are favourites to win the European showpiece, but Pavard said Germany and Portugal are also in contention for the title.

"We are one of the favourites but not the favourite," the 25-year-old said. "We can't just believe it is going to be an automatic win. We have to play match by match and we will see."

(Reporting by Manasi Pathak in Bengaluru; Editing by William Mallard)

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