Fabien Galthié paid tribute to Scotland for their performance against France as they claimed a first win in Paris since 1999.
With Les Bleus hoping to claim the 2021 Guinness Six Nations title from Wales, the Scots produced a stirring display, as Duhan van der Merwe’s last-gasp try earned them a 27-23 success.
Despite the loss, France’s bonus point in defeat was sufficient to take second spot in the Championship, for the second successive season, with Galthié confident his team are building.
But his first thought was to congratulate the Scots after a battling victory.
On Twitter he said: “Congratulations to Scotland. We finish second in the Guinness Six Nations for the second year running. This team is building.
“We will continue to experience these emotions together. Thanks to all the supporters who have believed in us.”
France could have won the game, failing to kick the ball out once the clock had gone into the red, as a fourth game of five in the Championship went down to the final play.
And it is those end of game situations which Galthié knows his team will have to work on.
Speaking to France Télévisions, he said: “We need to take away from this that there were no easy games. We need to remember the scenario in this game and the defeat. Even if there was a point where we thought we could not go and get the tries and winning margin, we still had plenty of chances to win the game. We can rue the fatigue of the team, who lacked clear heads at times. That’s reality. Bravo to Scotland too.”
For Charles Ollivon, the French skipper, there was understandable frustration at letting the win slip away, particularly after the work that had been done over the course of the campaign.
He added: “It’s a big disappointment, we gave a lot over these nine weeks. Of course it’s a big disappointment for the team, also for the people who supported us. It’s not easy. We will keep working, we know where we’ve come from, we will go back to work. This match will help us grow, that’s clear. It adds to our collective experience. We need to build on that, we are gaining experience.”