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France v Croatia World Cup Final Preview and Predictions - France to be crowned champions

Gary Emmerson 12 Jul 2018
  • Croatia have never beaten France in five attempts (three defeats, two draws)
  • France won the first meeting in the World Cup semi-final in 1998 before being crowned champions
  • France have kept four clean sheets in six games at the 2018 finals
  • Croatia have drawn all three knockout stage games 1-1 in 90 minutes

France and Croatia will battle it out in the 2018 World Cup Final at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on Sunday (Monday AEST) for the right to be crowned champions.

France v Croatia kicks off at 1.00am AEST on Monday. The game will be broadcast on SBS in Australia. 

Prediction



Match Preview


After 63 matches, including the third place play-off, it all boils down to France against Croatia to decide the winners of the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Former champions France, who claimed their only previous title on home soil in 1998, have pedigree in World Cup finals but for Croatia - a country with a population of just four million - it is a first appearance. Who will come out on top?

Didier Deschamps' France booked their spot in the final with a 1-0 win over Belgium having previously dumped out Argentina in a dramatic 4-3 game and Uruguay (2-0) in the knockout stages.

Croatia have needed extra-time or penalties to progress from all three games in the knockout stages after 1-1 draws with Denmark, hosts Russia and England and have effectively played one game more than France courtesy of the added 30 minutes in each of those matches.

How was left in the tank was something asked of Zlatko Dalic's side before the semi-final with England, but Croatia finished the stronger and deserved their place in the decider.

Can Luka Modric and Ivan Rakitic dominate the midfield again? Or will Paul Pogba, N'Golo Kante and Blaise Matuidi win the battle? It is likely that the final will be decide in the middle of the park.

France have been relatively unspectacular throughout the tournament - the win over Argentina aside - and have looked tough to break down. Australia's Socceroos are the other team to find a way past Hugo Lloris and that was from the penalty spot. That shouldn't change in the final.  

If Croatia start as slowly as they did against England in the semi-final, they could find themselves with an uphill battle and I think France win this by a single goal.

Stats


  • Croatia have never beaten France in five attempts (three defeats, two draws)
  • France won the first meeting in the World Cup semi-final in 1998 before being crowned champions
  • France have kept four clean sheets in six games at the 2018 finals
  • Croatia have drawn all three knockout stage games 1-1 in 90 minutes

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France v Croatia World Cup Final Preview and Predictions - France to be crowned champions

France and Croatia will battle it out in the 2018 World Cup Final at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow for the right to be crowned champions. Who will win?

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