Ex-Roger Federer coach analyzes crisis of French men's tennis

Ivan Ljubicic compared the state of French tennis to that of Italian tennis

by Lorenzo Ciotti
Ex-Roger Federer coach analyzes crisis of French men's tennis
© Clive Mason / Staff Getty Images Sport

These are lean times for French tennis, which is unable to have a quick generational turnover without a true top player, after the golden era of Jo-Wildried Tsonga, Gael Monfils and Richard Gasquet is almost at an end.

Ivan Ljubicic, former player and Roger Federer's coach now responsible for high-level affairs at the FFT, talked about the paucity of impressive results achieved by French tennis players at Roland Garros.

Gael Monfils
Gael Monfils© Clive Mason / Staff Getty Images Sport

"In Italy we know the structure. These are individual projects. Sinner never played a day for the Federation. He participated in group training sessions and courses, but he never played a day for the Federation. I don't think that at the top levels both the manager and the system. It shapes players and their mentality, but at a very, very high level, it's mostly individual projects. The Italian Federation is present if the players need something with their structure, services.

But it is above all Jannik Sinner who cheers them up. He is the point of reference, and this is what is missing in France. If you look at the top 200, France is better than Italy. But when you have Sinner, then Matteo Arnaldi or Lorenzo Musetti, who are really strong, that helps," he explained.

Richard Gasquet
Richard Gasquet© Clive Brunskill / Staff Getty Images Sport

Having already reached the semi-finals of Roland Garros, we can draw an initial assessment of the progress of the tennis players playing so far. If the top players with the exception of Novak Djokovic, who withdrew due to a knee problem, and perhaps Daniil Medvedev, who in truth has never been a fan of this surface, respected the predictions at the start of the tournament, the same cannot be said of the home tennis players.

Roger Federer Ivan Ljubicic