France vs Finland Preview 07/09/2021

Vitalii Vitleo /

France will be eager to bounce back from two disappointing draws when they welcome Finland to Lyon’s Groupama Stadium on Tuesday.

The reigning world champions were held by Bosnia & Herzegovina last weekend before drawing with Ukraine on Saturday.

In their second match of the season, Les Bleus drew 1-1 with Ukraine in a game played in front of 55,000 spectators in Kiev. Anthony Martial got the equaliser #FiersdetreBleus

— French Team ⭐⭐ (@FrenchTeam) September 6, 2021

However, Didier Deschamps’ side still find themselves four points clear of second-place Finland at the top of World Cup Qualifying Group D.

They have also yet to taste defeat during the campaign, recording two wins and three draws along the way.

After drawing 1-1 with Bosnia & Herzegovina, Les Blues registered the same scoreline against Ukraine last time out.

Despite seeing 62% possession and chalking up 16 attempts on goal, France were forced to come from behind to snatch a draw – thanks to Anthony Martial’s early second-half strike.

Believe it or not, Deschamps’ men have now failed to win any of their previous five matches in all competitions.

Having drawn with Hungary and Portugal during the Euro 2020 group stage, Les Blues were knocked out by Switzerland on penalties in the last 16.

It goes without saying that Deschamps will be looking for a big response from his players when Finland come to town.

In all fairness, Finland have also endured a poor run of results of late, having only managed to win two of their last 11 games in all competitions.

During the current international break, Finland sealed a goalless draw with Wales in a friendly before beating Kazakhstan 1-0 in Saturday’s qualifier.

Finland thoroughly deserved to beat Kazakhstan, though, having enjoyed 57% and racked up 13 shots last time out.

It is worth pointing out that each of Finland’s previous seven encounters have produced under 2.5 goals.

Head-to-head: When these two sides last met back in November 2020, Finland secured a shock 2-0 friendly victory over France in Paris.

However, France had won the previous eight meetings between the teams – keeping a clean sheet on five occasions during that period.

Team news: Deschamps is likely to restore both Karim Benzema and Raphael Varane to his starting XI after leaving them on the bench for the draw with Ukraine.

Finland could stick with the same team that picked up all three points last time out, with goalscorer Joel Pohjanpalo expected to partner Teemu Pukki in attack.

Regardless of France’s iffy recent run, the world champions have more than enough firepower to overcome Finland.

With that in mind, predicts that France will keep a clean sheet on their way to securing a low-scoring victory on home soil.

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