The World Cup progresses from the Group Stages to the Knockout Round and fans from all around will be looking forward to some really exciting fixtures. The knockouts sometimes bring out the hidden passion of some players and we are likely to witness one or two unlikely teams progressing onto the Quater Finals.
There are favorites for most these fixtures but the odds are really tight on the first game of Round of 16 (Knockout Stage). France vs Argentina. The game is on 06/30 on Saturday.
Didier Deschamps’ France – who topped Group C – will play against Sampaoli’s Argentina – which were placed second in Group D – courtesy of a late goal from Marcos Rojo. Both teams will be fielding their strongest XI as they have no first team suspensions or injuries.
La Albeceleste have had a troubled campaign so far and will look to change things by winning the game against France. They defeated Nigeria 2-1 in their final group game in a really exciting fixture. France are touted by many to go on and win this tournament, however, it is quite obvious that the team that wins will this key fixture will be one of the favorites to reach the Finals.
France Predicted XI:
DEF: Pavard, Varane, Umtiti, Mendy
MID: Pogba, Kanté Matuidi
ATT: Griezmann, Giroud, Mbappé
Argentina Predicted XI:
GK: F. Armani
DEF: Tagliafico, Otamendi, Rojo, Mercado
MID: Di Maria, Banega, Mascherano, Pérez
ATT: Higuain, Messi
France are more likely to 4-2-3-1 as they did in their previous games and the work of Kante and Pogba in the midfield will be pivotal to them. On the other hand, Argentina are opting for a traditional 4-4-2 with Messi and Higuain (or Aguero) up top.
France’s final group match was a far less exciting affair compared to Argentina’s heroic win to save them from early elimination. Both Les Bleus and Denmark had qualified from Group C with a game to spare and played out an uneventful 0-0 draw.
France have never beaten Argentina in five attempts, and Argentina won 2-1 against France in the 1978 World Cup group stage in their last competitive meeting.
Follow our blog for more interesting stories from the World Cup and a detailed match report after the game.