Quality to prevail for reigning champs
France can seal progression from Group D when they take on Denmark on Saturday.
It was only Australia in the opening match, but Didier Deschamps’ reigning champions looked very impressive despite missing a lot of players through injury.
The camp would have been rocked by losing Karim Benzema for the entire tournament last weekend, but Olivier Giroud stepped up with a brace against the Aussies, equalling Thierry Henry’s record as France’s all-time top goalscorer.
Paul Pogba and N’Golo Kante will be missed in central midfield, but Aurelien Tchouameni is definitely ready for the step up, while Adrien Rabiot produced a measured and effective performance to help the side to victory on matchday one.
Denmark would have been frustrated to be held to a goalless draw against Tunisia in their opener, but the Danes came up against a stubborn resistance and will still be confident in earning qualification.
Kylian Mbappe and Ousmane Dembele were mesmerising at times in the opener, with Antoine Griezmann thriving in a deeper attacking role than we have become accustomed to seeing him in.
Lucas Hernandez appeared to pick up a serious knee injury in the lead-up to Australia taking the lead, but in his brother Theo, Deschamps has a solid replacement to call on.
Ibrahima Konate and Dayot Upamecano looked extremely comfortable in central defensive, and they could dominate a fairly inexperienced Denmark frontline, an area of weakness in the side.
A draw would be a good result for Denmark in this match but sitting back and inviting pressure on their own goal could be a mistake due to the overwhelming quality in France’s ranks.
The Danes will have one eye on Tunisia v Australia in the first match of the day, with a victory for the former potentially harming Denmark’s chances of qualification, if France enter the final match with nothing to play for.
An outright play entices me enough to ignore a goals angle for this fixture, although I am not expecting as many goals as France’s opener.
France have scored in eight of ten.
France have conceded in seven of ten.
France have seen both teams score in five of ten.
France have seen over 2.5 goals in four of ten.
Denmark have scored in seven of ten.
Denmark have conceded in six of ten.
Denmark have seen both teams score in four of ten.
Denmark have seen over 2.5 goals in five of ten.