France is the favorite to win Group C and the French can all but assure they advance to the knockout round with a victory over Peru on Thursday in Russia. The Peruvians are a bit unlucky to have lost their opening match and are the 2018 World Cup Betting underdogs on the MyBookie Sportsbook for this one.
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France vs. Peru 2018 World Cup Betting Preview & Pick
— French Team (@FrenchTeam) 19 de junio de 2018
- When: Thursday, 11 AM ET
- Where: Ekaterinburg Arena, Ekaterinburg, Russia
- TV / Stream: Fox / Fox Sports Go
- 2018 World Cup Betting Odds: France -192 / Peru +250 / Draw +300 (Total at 2.5 goals)
Why Bet on France?
- Confederation: UEFA
- Head coach: Didier Deschamps
- Captain: Hugo Lloris
- FIFA Ranking: 7
The French are clearly the more talented team, but that was also the case in the opening round against Australia and France didn’t play great yet won 2-1. Antoine Griezmann converted to give France the lead after a goalless first half. Uruguayan referee Andres Cunha originally waved away French appeals for a penalty but then sought a video review and pointed to the spot after watching the replay.
Aussie Mile Jedinak tied it in the 62nd minute on a penalty before Paul Pogba’s deflected strike hit the bar and bounced in for a late winner. France struggled to break down Australia’s stern defense but gained a huge slice of luck when Pogba’s deflected effort looped over Mat Ryan and bounced off the underside of the crossbar with goal-line technology confirming the ball had crossed the line for an own goal. A VAR check found there had been no offside in the build-up.
“I didn’t expect such a tough game and to play against a team so well organized,” Pogba said after. “They were really determined and they defended very well. It was hard to play against them. We didn’t create much. We have to stay positive.”
Griezmann was voted man of the match but said he felt teammates N’Golo Kante or Lucas Hernandez should have got the prize instead. Griezmann admitted that pressure surrounding the French team, with seven players out of the 11 starters having never played in a World Cup before, was intense.
“It was laborious and we didn’t do well,” he said. “With the ball, we were not good enough. It was only the second time I was playing up front with Kylian [Mbappe] and Ousmane [Dembele]. We need more time to get used to play with one another.”
France is unbeaten in the 18 games that Griezmann has scored in (W16 D2 L0). Griezmann has been directly involved in nine of France’s last 13 goals in major tournaments (World Cup and European Championships), with seven goals and two assists. France has only managed to keep one clean sheet in their last seven international games, against the Republic of Ireland in May. They expect less of a defensive wall and therefore more space against Peru, but also more aggression.
- 1-H. Lloris
- 4-R. Varane
- 5-S. Umtiti
- 21-L. Hernández
- 2-B. Pavard
- 6-P. Pogba
- 13-N. Kanté
- 12-C. Tolisso
- 7-A. Griezmann
- 11-O. Dembélé
- 10-K. Mbappé
Why Bet on Peru?
- Confederation: CONMEBOL
- Head coach: Ricardo Gareca
- Captain: Paolo Guerrero
- FIFA Ranking: 11
Peru was a tough-luck 1-0 loser to Denmark in the opener. Christian Cueva skied his penalty shot, which was awarded after the referee consulted VAR, over the bar just before halftime, the most glaring of several misses for the South American side, who were back in the World Cup finals after a gap of 36 years.
Peru gave up the winning goal in the 56th minute. It entered on a 15-match unbeaten streak. The side left out all-time top-scorer Paolo Guerrero from their starting lineup. Guerrero came on after the hour mark and almost scored an equalizer but his header flew straight into the hands of goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel.
“My players did their best, so I really can’t complain,” manager Ricardo Gareca said. “I really believe Peru didn’t deserve to lose, but football is about effectiveness. We can’t cry over spilled milk, we have to recover as soon as possible.”
Peru had 17 shots in this game, the most by a team without scoring so far in the 2018 World Cup. Peru is now winless in their last seven World Cup games (W0 D2 L5).
France defender Benjamin Pavard on Peru: “We don’t feel any particular pressure. They lost their first game, so the pressure’s on them.”
France and Peru have met only once before at international level. The match in question, a friendly contested just prior to the 1982 FIFA World Cup, was won by Peru with a narrow-angled goal by Juan Carlos Oblitas nine minutes from time. Oblitas is now the sports director of the Peruvian National Team. Les Bleus have not lost to the South American opposition at a FIFA World Cup since 1978 when a late goal from Leopoldo Luque gave the Argentinian hosts victory over France in a thrilling match.
- 1-P. Gallese
- 2-A. Rodríguez
- 15-C. Ramos
- 17-L. Advíncula
- 6-M. Trauco
- 19-Y. Yotún
- 8-C. Cueva
- 23-P. Aquino
- 20-É. Flores
- 10-J. Farfán
- 9-P. Guerrero
Expert Final Prediction
France 2 – Peru 1
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