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Euros semi-final preview: Spain vs France

Spain vs France


Euros semi-final preview: Spain vs France

Euros semi-final preview: Spain vs France

Spain have blazed their way through these Euros in irresistible style; France have plotted their course to the semi-finals despite drawing three of their five matches so far after 90 minutes.

Didier Deschamps’ side saw off Portugal on penalties after 120 minutes of goalless football. Outside of that shootout, the French have scored a total of three goals so far in this tournament. That’s two own goals and a Kylian Mbappe penalty.

Kylian Mbappe has struggled

There’s every indication that France’s plan is for their grinding un-football to deaden Spain’s effervescent attack in Munich on Tuesday night.

France have a talented squad of their own, of course. Even if star man Kylian Mbappe is understandably struggling to produce his best football, playing as he is with a broken nose.

But Spain’s performances have seen them become favourites to lift the trophy; they’re currently 2/1 to triumph, with England 5/2, France 11/4 and the Netherlands 9/2.

Luis de la Fuente’s side have won each of the five games they’ve played so far, even if last time out they drew against Germany after 90 minutes. Julian Nagelsmann’s side scored a late equaliser to take the quarter-final to extra time – before Spain’s Mikel Merino scored in the 119th minute to knock out the hosts.

As for Les Bleus, despite a lack of oomph in attack they’ve done a formidable job of keeping the opposition at bay. France have conceded just one goal so far – Robert Lewandowski’s penalty in the final group game against Poland.

Spain have scored 11 goals already

Yet if anyone can undo that record, it’s the bustling, harrying attack of La Roja. Spain’s 11 goals so far is the joint-highest amount scored at Euro 2024.

It’s not all good news for the Spanish side, though; Pedri’s tournament is over, following the injury sustained by Toni Kroos’ tackle in the clash against Germany. And Dani Carvajal and Robin Le Normand are both suspended for this one.

More promisingly, Spain have had the better of it in France over the last 25 years, winning six of the last 10 meetings between the sides (France won three).

So how does this pan out? France aren’t unstoppable. Drawing against Poland, then going 120 minutes without a goal against a Portugal side carrying a past-it Ronaldo suggests a side that are content to bide their time – and settle for penalties if need be. But Spain have been the best side in the tournament, and they don’t have to dance to France’s tune.

Back Spain to make it through to the final at 4/5 – or take a slightly more adventurous approach and back Spain to win 1-0 at 27/5.

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