France Set to Progress in Bucharest

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World champions France are expected to prove too strong for Switzerland

Paul Pogba and Didier Deschamps will be hoping for more French success

World champions France should have no issues booking their place in the quarter finals of Euro 2020 when they take on Switzerland in Bucharest on Monday evening.

Didier Deschamps’ side may be yet to hit top gear at the finals, but they still booked their place in the knockout stages by finishing top of a group that also contained Euro 2016 winners Portugal and tournament specialists Germany.

That has set Les Bleus up with a last 16 clash against a Switzerland side that rather limped through the group stage as one of the best third-place sides, although they could be boosted by their 3-1 victory over Turkey last time out and they have also had three extra days rest heading into Monday’s contest.

Depleted France Should Still Have Too Much

France may have topped Group F, but that has come at a cost, with Deschamps having to deal with a mounting injury list that includes forward Ousmane Dembele and both recognised left-backs in Lucas Hernandez and Lucas Digne.

Those fitness concerns could force Deschamps into a formation change, but France should still have enough to overcome the Swiss inside 90 minutes, as they are unbeaten in their previous 19 competitive internationals, while it has been nearly 30 years since Switzerland last claimed a victory in the fixture.

Going out in the last-16 has become an all too familiar feeling for the Swiss, as they have exited their previous three major international tournaments at that stage and have not won a knockout fixture since the 1938 World Cup.

Vladimir Petkovic’s side have also struggled for goals in knockout football, scoring just once in their five previous such matches, so it would be no surprise to see France claim a victory to zero on Monday, which is available at 5/4.

Mbappe to Break Euros Duck

It has not quite happened yet for France striker Kylian Mbappe at this summer’s finals, as he is yet to score at the tournament despite coming close on several occasions and having a strike ruled out against Germany for a marginal offside.

Many will be surprised by the 22-year-old’s failure to get off the mark, especially as he ended the domestic season having scored 42 in all competitions for Paris Saint-Germain.

However, this is nothing new for Mbappe, as he only scored once during the group stages of the 2018 World Cup before bursting into form with a brace against Argentina in the first knockout round.

It would be no surprise to see something similar happen on Monday, particularly if Switzerland persevere with a back three, as that could leave spaces in the wide areas for Mbappe to exploit, making the PSG a star an intriguing option at 33/20 to score anytime.

Switzerland Could Frustrate For Large Spells

France should ultimately have too much for Switzerland, but that does not mean Petkovic’s side will make it easy for the world champions.

Four of the last five meetings between the two sides have ended all-square, including the goalless draw they played out in Lille during the group stages of Euro 2016.

Despite their poor record in knockout football, Switzerland do know how to frustrate their opponents, as they have only been trailing at half-time in one of their previous four knockout stage matches.

That suggests France may have to be patient before they can break Switzerland down, so backing the Tie/France Half Time/Full Time could be the way to go at 11/4.

*All odds correct at time of writing

A fountain of knowledge on football, Tom offers a particular in-depth expertise in EFL and European leagues.

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