Arsenal defender Bacary Sagna has said that the matches between England and France have always been like a derby due to the fierce nature of the matches.

England and France have been grouped in the same group for the Euro 2012. They are the favourites to qualify for the quarter finals of the competition ahead of both Sweden and Ukraine.

The opening group match will be against England and France. Both teams will be looking to get off to a good start, and it will lead to a very fierce encounter according to Arsenal defender Bacary Sagna.

The right back has been ruled out of the competition after suffering his second major injury of the season playing for Arsenal. In his place, French national team manager Laurent Blanc has used the Lille defender Debuchy, who has been impressive so far in the campaign for his club team.

The 29-year-old Bacary Sagna has said that he is extremely disappointed to miss out on the Euro 2012, but is determined to cheer France, who are looking for their repeat of their successful Euro campaign many seasons ago. France have already beaten Steven Gerrard's England in a recent friendly match, but Bacary Sagna reckons that it will be tough to separate them this time around.

"It is like a derby. Every time France play England it is massive. No one wants to lose. We beat them at Wembley, but this game will be totally different. They have changed manager as well, and have new players coming into the team so it will be very different. A successful tournament for France can only be winning it. You can only be successful by winning something. We want to go far and play good football as well," said Bacary Sagna ahead of the opening game for France at the Euro 2012.