Sunday, January 29, 2023

Prediction: Tunisia vs France

Veselin Trajkovic in Free Soccer Predictions 29 Nov 2022

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Verdict: Total goals over 3.5

Best odds: 11/5

Bookmaker: Unibet

The final round of the group stage at the World Cup is now underway, and over in Group D, Tunisia will do battle with France at the Education City Stadium in Ar-Rayyan, some six miles from the centre of Doha.

The goals for this match are rather different for these two teams, but neither should lack motivation to emerge victorious.

Tunisia

Tunisia arguably have the stronger motive going into the clash. Not only is the opportunity to take on the reigning champions of the world always to be relished, but a potential victory would also see them stand a decent chance of progressing from the second place in the group, depending on the result of the clash between Australia and Denmark on the same day.

At the moment, Tunisia are at the bottom of the group with one point after playing a goalless draw with Denmark followed by a 0-1 loss to Australia. Denmark are directly above, also with a point to their name, Australia are second with three.

Jalel Kadri’s team are obviously sound defensively, having conceded only once in the opening two matches, but they are one of just two teams not to have scored a single goal in the tournament. If they are to beat a team like France, that’s obviously something they’ll need to have worked on. Kadri and his players will be aware of the magnitude of the task ahead.

Team News

Kadri isn’t likely to make more changes than bear necessity asks, but that might include leaving out right-back Mohamed Drager who was subbed off at halftime against Australia, and giving either Wajdi Kechrida or Ferjani Sassi a chance in his place.

Monpellier winger Wahbi Khazri made cameo appearances in both matches so far, but Tunisia’s second-highest scorer of all time could be given a start for this one.

France

France are flying high at the moment and it may not have been the case until recently, but they are now about as likely to win this tournament as Brazil, picked by many as the top favourites. They smashed their way past Australia (4-1) and beat Denmark (2-1), and the world has had the pleasure of seeing the full potential of Kylian Mbappe in action. The Paris Saint-Germain star is absolutely incredible, with three goals to his name already.

The tournament has so far gone extremely well for Olivier Giroud. The veteran striker needs one more goal to become France’s all-time top scorer.

Didier Deschamps’ team naturally top the group with six points and having secured progress already, their eyes will be looking towards Group C and the prospect of facing Argentina and Mbappe’s club teammate Lionel Messi in the round of 16. Whether they’ll be relishing the prospect of the challenge or hoping for something else to happen, remains to be seen.

Team News

Deschamps is likely to wring as many changes as possible without seeming unwise. Defenders Ibrahima Konate and William Saliba, as well as midfielders Matteo Guendouzi, Youssouf Fofana and winger Kingsley Coman will be looking to start, as will striker Marcus Thuram.

Mbappe has reportedly asked to remain in the lineup, believing he needs no rest.

Lucas Hernandez has left the tournament after picking up an ACL tear, and there is little alternative for the left defensive flank apart from his brother Theo. But that may well be the best reason not to risk the AC Milan player, and to that end, Deschamps is apparently considering trying out Real Madrid midfielder Eduardo Camavinga at left-back.

Conclusion

A real battle is to be expected in this one, with Tunisia desperately going for a win against France, whose backup players certainly boast formidable quality and will be looking to prove their worth to Deschamps ahead of the knockout stage.

Both teams are likely to take an attacking approach, and there should be plenty of chances, plenty of goals.

Verdict: Total goals over 3.5

Best odds: 11/5

Bookmaker: Unibet

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Veselin Trajkovic


Vesko is a football writer that likes to observe the game for what it is, focusing on teams, players and their roles, formations, tactics, rather than stats. He follows the English Premier League closely, Liverpool FC in particular. His articles have been published on seven different football blogs.

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