France vs Belgium FIFA World Cup 2018 – Lineups, Predictions & Stats Preview 10 July 2018

France France
1 : 0
Belgium Belgium
10 July 2018,18:00 Europe/London

Prediction for the match

Both teams to score - Yes
Over 2.5 goals in the game

Two of Europe's heavyweights go head to head in a game that has been coined as the "final before the final." On paper, these sides are stronger than the other two semi-finalists, meaning that the eventual winner from this match will be installed as the favourites to lift the 2018 World Cup.

France Probable Lineups and Stats

Didier Deschamps has no significant issues to manage ahead of the match. The France coach should hence, have his whole squad available to him tomorrow, with Blaise Matuidi now accessible subsequent to serving a suspension against Uruguay. However, Benjamin Mendy and Sidibe are a minor doubt.

Regardless of whether Blaise Matuidi comes back to the side straightaway stays to be seen, particularly with Tolisso performing well against Uruguay. Whatever remains of the team needs no changes, with the frontline, involving, Kylian Mbappe, Olivier Giroud and Antoine Griezmann, beginning to find the rhythm.

N’Golo Kante has been monster so far in midfield and should proceed in a similar shape tomorrow to stop a pillaging Kevin De Bruyne. Pogba will be key, with his ability to play forward passes to the forwards. Samuel Umtiti and Raphael Varane have at last become acquainted with their partnership, while the young Atletico Madrid defender Lucas Hernandez is the standout defender so far. Benjamin Pavard has been their start man and will look to stop the mercurial Eden Hazard on Tuesday night. France have scored a total of nine goals in the tournament so far, totalling an average of eleven shots per game.

Probable lineup (4-2-3-1): Lloris; Pavard, Umtiti, Varane, Lucas Hernandez; Kante, Pogba; Matuidi, Mbappe, Griezman; Giroud.

Belgium Probable Lineups and Stats

Roberto Martinez has a noteworthy headache ahead of this tie, with PSG right back Thomas Meunier suspended after picking up a second yellow card in the tournament. There is no natural replacement for the hard-working right back so the Spanish tactician will look to go with wing-backs. China-based Carrasco should begin on the left side, with Nacer Chadli being conveyed on the other flank. Marouane Fellaini has impressed so far when called up and will look to retain his place alongside Witsel. The man has turned into an important figure in midfield, having demonstrated some noteworthy defensive sharpness while continually being a threat in the final third when crosses come in. 

The liquid front three trio of Romelu Lukaku, Kevin De Bruyne and Eden Hazard will look to still the show once again. The former two will have free roles while Lukaku will stretch the defensive line to create space for the two. The back-three of Toby Alderweireld, Vincent Kompany and Jan Vertonghen, were at their most noteworthy so far against Brazil. A comparative performance against France could show Belgium their first World Cup final. Chelsea shot-stopper Thibaut Courtois will be urgent too, with his shot halting capacities, something that baffled Brazil forever a week ago.

Likely Starting Lineup (3-4-2-1): Courtois; Alderweireld, Kompany, Vertonghen; Chadli, Fellaini, Axel Witsel, Yannick Carrasco; Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard; Romelu Lukaku.

The Red Devils have had an average of seventeen shots scoring a total of fourteen goals, the highest number of goals scored by a single team. Thomas Meunier will miss the tie after receiving a second yellow card.

France v Belgium – Head to Head

The match tomorrow will be the 74th encounter between France and Belgium. France have won 24 while the Red Devils have won a record 30 with 19 being draws. The last time when Belgium and France achieved the FIFA World Cup semi-final in a similar edition was in 1986Both lost the semi-finals, yet France beat the Red Devils in the third-place playoff final. They have not met in a World Cup match since then. The last meeting between this two was in 2015 where Belgium won 4-3.

Expert Tip

On paper, the two sides look uniformly matched, and it is difficult to pick the standout winner. This is a match that ought to go directly down the wire, however the liquid front-three of Eden Hazard, Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku gives Belgium the slightest advantage. A great tip for this game is over 2.5 goals or both teams to score.
Both teams to score - Yes
Over 2.5 goals in the game

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