Uruguay vs France
Competition: 2018 World Cup finals
Date: 6 July 2018
Kick-off: 16:00 CET
Thirty hours before kick-off, it felt that Edinson Cavani was ruled out for good. He hadn’t trained after Uruguay’s 2-1 triumph over Portugal, making some… go four years back, and remember what happened with Diego Lugano, captain, back then, of the team. After getting injured in a group match (World Cup finals in Brazil), he insisted on playing in the next one, even though he hadn’t trained. Óscar Tabárez, Uruguay’s coach, told him that to play, he needed to train, so Lugano had a pain-killing injection before one of the last training sessions, but had to quit, as it was all too obvious that his condition was just not good enough to play in a massive World Cup finals match. He was the first one to acknowledge it, talking to his coach. Tabárez is not the kind of man who’ll change his principals, not even for Cavani, not even if the PSG star asks to be included in the starting lineup (which feels highly improbable, as he knows Tabárez very well). He did train on Thursday, but only lightly, separate from the group. Unless a… miracle happens, Cavani is out, meaning that Uruguay will face France without one of their best players. You could write them off, or, OR, you could expect the rest of the team to… pitch in, to cover Cavani’s gap. Uruguay have done great thus far, and it’s a pity they have(?) to play such a massive game without an impossible-to-replace player.
With Kylian Mbappé offering some memorable… highlights, France eliminated Argentina, beating them 4-3, despite going 2-1 down early in the second half. The PSG star was a joy to watch, and sort of overshadowed certain France weaknesses. Antoine Griezmann missed a training session, but whatever his injury problem was, he looked perfectly fine on Wednesday, and is expected to start the game. Didier Deschamps has all his players at his disposal, with the sole exception of Blaise Matuidi, who is suspended due to cards. Corentin Tolisso is expected to take his place in the starting lineup. As for Cavani and his absence (most probably) from this crucial match, Adil Rami, one of France’s central defenders, practically… celebrated when he was told in a Press conference that the Uruguayan striker was more or less ruled out of this game.
Previous five matches:
Uruguay vs Portugal 2-1
Uruguay vs Russia 3-0
Uruguay vs Saudi Arabia 1-0
Egypt vs Uruguay 0-1
Uruguay vs Uzbekistan 3-0
France vs Argentina 4-3
Denmark vs France 0-0
France vs Peru 1-0
France vs Australia 2-1
France vs United States 1-1
Whoever wins this game, will be facing the winner of the game between Brazil and Belgium in the first semifinal.
Uruguay vs France: Head to head Stats
Uruguay and France have met eight times in the past. Three wins for the Uruguayans, just one for the French, and four draws. Their most recent encounter is a 1-0 Uruguay win in a friendly game in 2013. Total goals, 8-4 for Uruguay.
Uruguay vs France: Prediction
France are considered clear favorites to win and qualify, but… I trust Uruguay enough, even without Cavani, to take the game at least to extra-time.
Uruguay vs France: Betting Tips
“Uruguay or draw” is at 1.83, my main tip. “Uruguay to keep a clean sheet” is at 3.50, and I like it a lot, because without Cavani I expect them to look even more focused defensively. Remember, this is a team that has conceded just one goal in four games thus far in Russia. Last, “Uruguay to qualify” pays 2.75.