|(Image courtesy of newgersy.com)
Off the back of a win in their first game against Australia, France take on Peru at the Ekaterinburg Arena. It wasn’t the prettiest of wins, with controversy about one of their goals and a late winner to seal the points, but France will be hoping to take that momentum forward into the second game and produce a result. Meanwhile Peru go into this game having been defeated by Denmark by a slender scoreline of 1-0. This is a must win game for the Peruvians, as otherwise getting out of this group will seem nigh on impossible.
Goalkeeper: Hugo Lloris.
I don’t see anything other than the France skipper obtaining his 100th international cap. Milestone. A reliable player and a vital part of France’s system.
Defenders: Lucas Hernandez (LB), Samuel Umtiti and Raphael Varane (CBs), Benjamin Pavard (RB).
I’m going for the same back four that did the job against Australia. The full backs looked sharp and had great spells of play going forward, and indeed tracking back. Though Umtiti made a horrendous oversight, he’s still a quality player and you can’t drop the lad for that, as his team still won. Varane needs to step up a bit here, as does his partner in defence, as they lacked control of the last game and didn’t really do much in my opinion.
Midfielders: N’Golo Kanté, Paul Pogba and Corentin Tolisso (CMs).
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. These three played solidly together in the middle of the park, particularly Pogba and I feel that it’ll be these three starting against Peru, consistency in the squad.
Forwards: Ousmane Dembelé (LW), Olivier Giroud (ST), Antoine Griezmann (RW).
Though Mbappé had a decent game against the Aussies, I’d like to see Deschamps switch things up and slot Giroud in through the middle, with Mbappé possibly coming on later. Giroud brings a different aspect to the game; physicality, hold up play and an aerial threat, not to mention his bullet of a left peg. We saw when he came on in the last game how he linked up well with the midfield, so that’s another dynamic he’ll bring. As for Griezmann and Dembelé, they’re comfortable on the wing and can make things happen cutting in inside.
Goalkeeper: Pedro Gallese.
Standard stuff really, an experienced international. Didn’t do much wrong against Denmark.
Defenders: Miguel Trauco (LB), Christian Ramos and Alberto Rodriguez (CBs), Luis Advincula (RB).
This line of defence seems to gel well and their quality appeared to show against the Danes. Kept the likes of Eriksson and Dalsgard fairly quiet.
Midfielders: Yoshima Yotun and Renato Tapia (CMs), Edison Flores (LM), Christian Cueves (CAM) and Andre Carrillo (RM).
Opting for the same midfield, as they looked threatening out wide and through the middle, peppering the Danish box and getting shots away. Didn’t do as much as they should have. As for Cuevo, the midfield maestro misfired, having fluffed a penalty and had barely any time on the ball. There needs to be a step up in this game, big time.
Forwards: Paolo Guerrero (ST).
It’ll be a big boost that the Peruvian captain up top has had his ban reprieved, and through training and coming on off the bench in the last game, he should be match fit and raring to lead his team out against Les Bleus.
SCORE PREDICTION: France 3-1 Peru. Should be France who outplay the South American side and let their quality really shine through. Peru really need to step up, and will want this, so it won’t be easy, but France should break through with little trouble.