France vs Belgium
After one of the best matches at the World Cup and victory over Argentina 4:3, French team had to play against defensively much better Uruguayans but still showed very good performance and crusied to a 2:0 victory. Goals were scored in 40th minute via Varane and 61st minute thanks to Griezmann.
Overall, they had the ball possession more and looked somehow like a more experienced team on the field. Uruguayans weren' that bad either, but simply it wasn't their day and their chances were as concrete as possible even though they had decent amount of efforts towards opponent's goal as well.
Giroud is set to lead their attack in a version of 4-2-3-1 formation. He should be supported by Matuidi, Griezmann and Mbappe as offensive midfielders. Right back Djibril Sidibe is only injury doubt for them. Blaise Matuidi returns from suspension.
After impressive performances in the group stage and a bit shaky appearance against Japan in last sixteen phase when they were down with two goals in the scoreline and securing the position with a goal in third minute of additional time - Belgium managed to overpower one of the world's forces with a 2:1 victory on last Friday evening.
They had a very strong performance at the start of the match, taking the lead already in thirteen minute via an own goal. Kevin De Bruyne doubled up their lead in 31st minute as Belgium looked very dangerous in the first halftime.
As the time progressed, they switched to more and more defensive approach and it turned out to be smart decision - they only conceded one goal, in 76th minute via Augusto. However, needs to be said that they were lucky at some moments as the players from Brazil dominated the second part completely.
Belgium really impressed against Brazil last time out, but might have some more difficulties here knowing that they miss right back Meunier now. Lukaku, Hazard and De Bruyne should be leading their attack in 4-3-3 formation. Right back Thomas Meunier is suspended for this after his second yellow card against Brazil at the World Cup.
- There have been over 2.5 goals scored in 8 of Belgium's last 9 games (FIFA World Cup).
France actually showed that they have plenty of quality at the World Cup and can adopt their approach according to the opponent they have. With Belgium as their opponent, I can't see them trying to do something in defensive way, as they know they can't stay behind the ball and wait very patiently for something to develop. Having in mind both's quality in attack, I see plenty of value with goals in this one.
France vs Belgium prediction
Over 2.5 goals @ 2.11 with Pinnacle