Wissam Ben Yedder, Lucas Hernandez: France call a dream come true
Lucas Hernandez and Wissam ben Yedder have said their maiden call-ups to the France squad are the realisation of a dream.
Atletico Madrid defender Hernandez and Sevilla forward Ben Yedder are in line to make their senior debuts as France play friendlies against Colombia on Friday and Russia next week.
Hernandez, born in Marseille while his father was playing for the club, could have opted to play for Spain but had represented the country of his birth up to under-21 level.
"The France shirt represents everything -- it's something you dream of when you're little," he said.
"You dream of wearing the shirt, of being able to defend it. Today I have the chance to defend the shirt of Les Bleus at the highest level.
"In life I'm a calm person, but that changes when I get onto the pitch. I'm a warrior on the pitch, they like you to play like that at my club. I can bring that to the France team."
Ben Yedder last played for his country in an under-21 game in 2012, but has caught coach Didier Deschamps' eye.
The forward, who scored twice against Manchester United to knock them out of the Champions League at Old Trafford, told L'Equipe: "Since I was small, I had been saying I was going to get there.
"I'm there now, and that's something no-one can change or take from me. It's very, very satisfying to fulfill your dream."
Ben Yedder has eight Champions League goals, second only to Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo, and said his strikes at United had not surprised him, adding: "I really felt I was in my element.
"What I did for the first goal I have done hundreds of times. I can see the incident. [Pablo] Sarabia gave me a good pass, and, when I controlled it, I was going to come back onto my left foot.
"In the end, I managed to see what [Eric] Bailly was doing, I knew I had space, I threw a feint, he fell, I shot and the ball went where it needed to go.
"It's my dream to be among the best. I want to be there because, above all, I love football. I don't want to set myself limits."
Ben Yedder is likely to challenge Arsenal's Alexandre Lacazette -- absent for the March friendlies through injury -- for a place in the World Cup squad.
"I don't compare myself. Whether it be Lacazette or another player, I don't compare ever," he said. "I try to show to myself that I'm up to it. Everyone has their own path."
Ian is ESPN's French football correspondent. Twitter: @ian_holyman