Spedding and France feeling the pressure
IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Scott Spedding admitted that the pressure will be on France and coach Guy Noves ahead of his first full season in charge starting with Saturday's rugby international in Toulouse against Samoa.
France have won just three of seven internationals since former Toulouse coach Noves took over and finished a disappointing fifth in the Six Nations last season.
Following the Samoa, game France play Australia on November 19 and New Zealand in Paris on November 26 for the first time since they were humiliated 13-62 at the World Cup in 2015.
"It's been a year now that we've been together. I know that the public want to see results and there's a big month ahead of us when we have to win matches," said Clermont fullback Spedding.
South Africa-born Spedding was first called up to two years ago, but despite his 16 caps the 30-year-old admitted he still felt "like a newcomer".
"There are always huge expectations in the France team. It's normal. I don't feel like a leader; I want to show that I deserve my place.
"It's a big month to show that I really want to be part of this adventure until 2019 [World Cup in Japan]."
The team are just coming off two weeks intensive training in south-western France before taking on Samoa.
"The pressure is settling in nicely and will gradually build. I hope we'll live up to everyone's expectations, especially our own," added hooker Camille Chat.