France v Croatia World Cup Final Betting Preview, Odds & Tips
Ben Levene (@BenLevene96) previews France v Croatia and provides us with his best bets for Sunday’s World Cup final, analysing team news, potential line-ups, head-to-head, key stats and facts and more.
France v Croatia Betting Preview, Odds & Tips
- Date: 15/07/18
- Time: 16:00
- Venue: Luzhniki Stadium
- Channel: BBC/ITV
Pre-tournament 13/2 shots, France, have reached the final for a successive major tournament in impressive fashion. They did enough to progress past Australia, Peru, and Denmark in Group C with a game to spare.
The knockout stage however, is where Les Bleus have really come to the fore. Against Argentina in the last 16 they were devasting on the counter attack as they progressed 4-3 winners. In the following ties against Uruguay and Belgium, France progressed without conceding. They were extremely organised and limited opposition chances.
Kylian Mbappe has rightly caught attention this tournament, but behind him N’golo Kante and Blaise Matuidi have been instrumental in France’s solid and consistent performance. Matuidi’s absence against Uruguay was evident as they failed to gather a foothold on the game.
For a third-consecutive knockout game, Croatia earned victory beyond 90 minutes. They’ve yet to show fatigue but surely a days less rest, along with the mental and physical exertion Zlatko Dalic’s side have faced will take its toll. This Sunday Croatia will line-up in their first ever World Cup final. They were 33/1 to lift the trophy before a ball was kicked.
Ante Rebic and Ivan Perisic are Croatia’s main outlets outwide, while Luka Modric will look to receive the ball and orchestrate play.
Three of seven World Cup finals post 1990 have ended 0-0 including each of the last two. Just one has seen both teams score, and similarly just one has gone over 2.5.
Referee Nestor Pitana is on duty here and has shown 12 cards in the four matches he’s officiated this tournament.
Neither side have fresh injury worries. Danijel Subasic and Sime Vrsaljko recovered to start versus England. Ivan Strinic and Mario Mandzukic withdrew with cramp in extra-time on Wednesday.
Potential France Starting XI: Lloris; Pavard, Varane, Umtiti, Hernandez; Kante, Pogba, Matuidi; Mbappe, Giroud, Griezman
Potential Croatia Starting XI: Subasic; Vrsaljko, Lovren, Vida, Strinic; Brozovic, Modric, Rakitic; Rebic, Mandzukic, Perisic
Head To Head
- The last two meetings between the pair have ended level.
Key Stats & Facts
- France have kept four clean sheets in six games.
- Croatia have conceded the first goal in all three of their knockout games.
- France 10/11
- Draw 9/4
- Croatia 4/1
Didier Deschamps’ defensively organised France side can shut out Croatia. They’ve kept four clean sheets from six games, including their last two against Uruguay and Belgium. Full-backs Benjamin Pavard and Lucas Hernandez are centre-backs by nature, while N’golo Kante and Blaise Matuidi do brilliant jobs of screening the defence. The 17/10 for a France win to nil offers the value this Sunday.