France v Belgium Betting Preview, Odds & Tips | 10th July
Sam Langston (@Samlan98) previews France v Belgium and provides us with his best bets for Tuesday’s semi-final clash by analysing team news, potential line-ups, head-to-head, key stats and facts and more.
France v Belgium Betting Preview, Odds & Tips
- Date: 10/07/2018
- Time: 19:00
- Venue: Saint Petersburg Stadium
- Channel: BBC One
To determine who has the honour of losing to England in the World Cup final next Sunday, the spectacular Saint Petersburg Stadium hosts an enticing semi-final encounter.
On a serious note, we can expect a cracker on Tuesday evening, when two technically gifted sides collide in a potential World Cup classic.
Despite doubts initiated by the French media about his tactical capabilities, Didier Deschamps has led Les Blues to consecutive tournament semi-finals. His star-studded side are odds-on (8/11) to qualify for the Moscow-based final and have been priced as the outright favourites (2/1) in the ‘World Cup winner’ market.
Despite the bookmakers favouring France, key performance data suggests Deschamps’ side have underperformed offensively. Les Bleus rank 15th for shots, 16th for shots in the six-yard box, and 18th for attempts in the penalty area on average per-game, placing lower in these metrics than each of their semi-finalist counterparts.
In their two previous knockout fixtures, six shots on target resulted in six goals for the French, producing an unsustainable, yet highly clinical conversion rate. With a collective xG conceded of 6.7, the highest out of the four nations left in the tournament, Belgium can be exploited if this ruthless form is replicated. The Red Devils were bailed out by Thibaut Courtois in their quarter-final clash, having surrendered 27 shots to Brazil, however a more clinical front-line could pounce with greater conviction here.
Conversely, Roberto Martínez’s men have shown an impressive attacking proficiency in Russia, bagging the highest number of goals (14) throughout the tournament thus far. When key performance data is considered, this feat cannot be labelled a coincidence – the Belgians place 1st in the shots on target metric, rank 2nd for shots in the penalty area, 3rd for total attempts, and place 6th for shots in the six-yard box on average per-game.
Samuel Umtiti continues to carry a niggling knee injury and will be assessed before the tie.
First choice right-back Thomas Meunier is suspended for Belgium.
Potential France Starting XI: Lloris, Hernández, Umtiti, Varane, Pavard, Kanté, Pogba, Matuidi, Griezmann, Mbappé, Giroud.
Potential Belgium Starting XI: Courtois, Vertonghen, Alderweireld, Kompany, Chadli, Boyata, Witsel, Fellaini, Hazard, De Bruyne, Lukaku.
Head To Head
- The last meeting between the sides occurred in 2015 and culminated in a seven goal thriller. Belgium ran out 4-3 winners.
Key Stats & Facts
- France have scored in 9 out of their last 10 against nations who rank 10th or above in the ELO Ratings. Belgium have bagged in 4 out of their last 6 versus similarly ranked sides.
- France – 31/20
- Draw – 58/25
- Belgium – 21/10
Belgium’s defensive frailties can be exploited by Griezmann and co on Tuesday, in a tie which should be an entertaining, free-flowing affair. Roberto Martínez will set-up his side to outscore Les Bleus and another impressive attacking showing should see The Red Devils also net at least once.