By: Jason Green
Date: Thursday June 21st
Time: 4:00 PM
Match Odds: France -195 / Peru +550 / Draw +305
Over/Under: 2.5 goals
France bagged three points in winning their opening Group C match beating Australia 2-1, but it was far from a great match from them. They scored on a penalty and an own goal and while they won their time of possession battle (55% to 45%) they could not take advantage of that since they did not play a good match in the middle of the pitch.
Peru lost their opening match 1-0 against Denmark where they really missed out. They not only missed a penalty, but they also had a better time of possession (53% to 47%) and they had more shots on target (7-5). The Peruvians pressed the envelope on the attack and were in the Danes part of the field for much of the match, but still could not score. Peru has been held scoreless in their last two matches and they may make changes up front.
All-time leading scorer for Peru Paolo Guerrero may get the starting nod up front in this big match with Edison Flores heading to the bench. Head coach Ricardo Gareca has to come up with some combination for Peru to Scoreand if they cannot Scorethey will not win and if they do not win facing France their hopes for the knockout stage are dashed.
This is the first ever matchup between France and Peru.
The French are unbeaten in their last five matches, but before the win over Australia their previous three were facing teams that are not playing in Russia.
France must play better in the middle of the pitch in this match, as they were disappointing in that area in the win over Australia. Didier Deschamps has taken some heat for making some wrong selections in the last match and veteran Blaise Matuidi may get the starting nod and it would also not be surprising if Nabil Fekir is in the starting 11 taking the place of Barcelona’s OUsmane Dembele who did not do much at all in the last match.
Peru was around the Danish box often in the 1-0 loss, but they did not get many great shots on net and they also gave the Danes too much space. They have to take a different approach facing France, as the South American club will likely not win the time of possession battle.
Paul Pogba from Manchester United leads the French midfield and he has to step up against Peru. The Peruvians have a legit defense, but their midfield play is not great and France has to take advantage of that. They must create scoring chances from the middle of the pitch as well as play good defense against the counter attack, which is Peru’s best chance to score. Jefferson Agustín Farfan and André Martín Carillo lead the Peru attack and while it is likely they will not get many chances to find the back of the net they have to take advantage when they do. Easier said than done.
Last Three Matches
6/1/18 France 3 Italy 1 (Friendly)
6/9/18 France 1 United States 1 (Friendly)
6/16/18 France 2 Australia 1 (World Cup)
6/3/18 Saudi Arabia 0 Peru 3 (Friendly)
6/9/18 Sweden 0 Peru 0 (Friendly)
6/16/18 Peru 0 Denmark 1 (World Cup)
Prediction: Can France bounce back after a less than stellar showing in their opening match? Can Peru find some offense to go along with their solid defense? Both big questions and I would say yes and no. France will have a much better showing in this match knowing they can advance to the knockout stage if they get a win and Denmark does not lose to Australia. Peru will continue with their struggles to put the ball in the net and France will win this match 2-0.