Netherlands vs France: Team News, Lineups and Predictions
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Netherlands vs France: Team News, Lineups and Predictions

21/06/24 13:36

Netherlands vs France Predictions

Kylian Mbappe is set to return to the French squad despite a broken nose as France take on the Netherlands in group D’s crunch fixture at the Leipzig Stadium this evening.

Mbappe, who had to be substituted off in the 90th minute of France’s 1-0 victory over Austria, was spotted in training yesterday with a protective face mask emblazoned with the French tricolor flag.

Although UEFA have ordered that the mask be of one color not reflective of the players nation during the match, the fact he is training just four days after what looked to be the end of his group stages will be a massive boost to France. He may not start the game, but he will certainly be available off the bench if Didier Deschamps sees fit to use him.

The French squad is otherwise fully fit, and with plenty of striking options available in Mbappe’s absence, Les Bleus will remain confident of fielding a team that can sweep the Dutch aside. Few changes are expected except at the top of the field.

The Netherlands squad remains untouched by injuries, and changes in the lead up to this game will likely be purely tactical. Early pre-match reports say that starlet Xavi Simons will likely be benched after a poor game against Poland, with Saudi-based Georginio Wijnaldum to come in for him.

Bayer Leverkusen right-back Jeremie Frimpong is also expected to start tonight, making his first appearance this Euro’s after a stellar season in the Bundesliga under Xabi Alonso. He will provide an extra burst of pace and bring the threat of goals as well as crossing into the box.

For either side, a win would see them safely through to the round of 16, and big margin of victory would almost certainly seal top spot in the group for the winner.

What you need to know

France form: LWWDW

Netherlands form: WLWWW

Where: Leipzig Arena, Leipzig

When: 8pm, 21st June

Where can you watch it: BBC one and BBC iplayer.

Predicted Lineups

France (4-2-3-1): Maignan (GK), Kounde, Hernandez, Saliba, Upamecano, Rabiot, Kante, Griezmann, Dembele, Thuram, Giroud.

Netherlands (4-3-3): Verbruggen (GK), Frimpong, Ake, Van Dijk, De Vrij, Schouten, Veerman, Wijnaldum, Gakpo, Malen, Depay.

Prediction

After narrow, nervy wins for both sides in their opening fixtures, both will be desperate to tear apart the other to make a statement, and to put their squads at ease. Both nations are considered contenders for the tournament, with France just pipping the Netherlands to play the role of favorites.

However, do not write the Netherlands off, as we saw in the last game that their wing play, particularly down the left flank through Gakpo, has the potential to cause trouble for any right-back in the world. Now, with Frimpong added into the mix, expect the Dutch to cause trouble on both sides.

For France, N’golo Kante will be key. His performance against Austria was nothing short of superhuman, and if France are to keep out an extremely dangerous Oranje attack, Kante will be at the heart of their defenses.

I expect France to win this one, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it swayed the other way either with two teams of such quality.

3-2 France

Benji Kosartiyer
Journalist
Harry Pascoe

Football Writer

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