France will face Peru at the Ekaterinburg Arena on Thursday the 21st of June.
France will be hoping to take a step closer to qualifying from Group C, but Didier Deschamps’ men face a stern test against an adventurous Peru side at the Ekaterinburg Arena on Thursday.
Deschamps’ men defeated Australia 2-1 to go top of the group while Peru, in their first soccer world cup finals since 1982, lost 1-0 to Denmark.France are favourites to come out on top and claim all three points, but Peru are not to be underestimated and are capable of hurting Les Bleus.
France vs Peru | Thursday 21 June | Ekaterinburg Arena (17:00)
To Win (90 Mins)
France began their group stage campaign with a hard-fought 2-1 victory over a resilient Australia side at the Kazan Arena. Les Bleus were the only team among the title favourites to win their opening game, but Deschamps’ men will need to be more competitive against Peru after a sluggish start. Victory over the South Americans will be enough to secure a spot in the Last 16.
Deschamps has called on star player Antoine Griezmann to do more, while the likes of Kylian Mbappe and Paul Pogba also need to step up and show they mean business. Griezmann has been directly involved in nine of France’s last 13 goals scored in major tournaments (soccer world cup and European Championships), with seven goals and two assists.
Hugo Lloris will earn his 100th cap for the national team and become the first goalkeeper to reach this milestone for France. Meanwhile, Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud will be hoping for a start after he was involved in the build-up to the winning goal against Australia.
Peru will be fighting for their lives after a 1-0 opening defeat to Denmark left their tournament hopes hanging by a thread despite a largely impressive display. The South Americans dominated the match but wasted a series of good chances, including missing a penalty, before they conceded late on.
The Peruvians beat France 1-0 in their only meeting in a friendly in 1982 and will look to replicate that feat. Ricardo Gareca’s side will be desperate to get points on the board to avoid an early exit.
Peru boast attacking flair in abundance in the shape of Edison Flores, Andre Carrillo and talismanic striker Paolo Guerrero. Guerrero, whose doping ban was frozen just before the soccer world cup, is expected to start against France after he impressed when he came off the bench against the Danes.
Los Incas are not to be underestimated by France. They are the no. 11-ranked side in the world and came through CONMEBOL qualifying ahead of back-to-back Copa America winners Chile.
Verdict: France Win (6/10)
Peru will have to take risks as they seek their first win in Russia and that strategy could give France some space to hit them on the break, using the pace of Mbappe and Ousmane Dembele. I’m backing a win for Les Bleus at 6/10.