2018 FIFA World Cup – Final Analysis

France v Croatia

Monday 16th July, 1.00am AEST

France had question marks over the exact personnel that should constitute their starting 11 coming into the tournament, but a combination of exciting performances from teenager Mbappe and the tactical balance provided by Giroud’s hold-up play has cemented the forward areas in Deschamps’s mind. Pogba has often played it safe rather than setting out to dominate midfield, but his discipline alongside N’Golo Kante, his tidy passing as well as the occasional raking ball over the top for Mbappe to chase have proven effective for this team. The pace of the young Frenchman will be particularly concerning for a Croatian side that’s had to come from behind in each of their knockout matches as they’ve all gone to extra-time, and it would be a surprise if fatigue doesn’t prove an issue for Zlatko Dalic’s men.

Meanwhile, Les Bleus have bulldozed a path to the final without really breaking a sweat and have had an additional day’s rest ahead of the final, while Mbappe is hardly the only one with youthful legs and energy in this side. They have an average squad age of 26.0 years old, compared with Croatia’s 27.9, with the likes of key players Modric, Rakitic and Mandzukic all the wrong side of 30. That’s significant, as the last six finals have all seen the younger team triumph, as the older side has run out of steam by the time of their seventh match, and as strong favourites on paper regardless, France ought to win this within 90 minutes.


Betting Strategy

 BACK – France to win at $1.96

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