We end today’s action with France taking on Ecuador with the opportunity on the line for Ecuador to advance to the next round.
Where to watch –
For viewers keen to catch this game from USA, this is where they can tune in.
Noumandiez Doue (Ivory Coast)
Starting lineups –
Ecuador XI vs France: Domínguez; Paredes, Guagua, Erazo, W. Ayoví; Noboa, Minda, A.Valencia, Montero; Arroyo, E.Valencia.
France XI vs. Ecuador: Lloris; Sagna, Koscielny, Sakho, Digne; Pogba, Schneiderlin, Matuidi; Sissoko, Benzema, Griezman.
With Switzerland hot on Ecuador’s heels, they will have to match their result tonight if they wish to go onto the Round of 16. Switzerland face Honduras in the other game and are expected to get the 3 points. It is not that straight forward for Ecuador though, who face a comparatively much stiffer opponent in France.
Les Blues are flying high after two explosive performances which has already booked their place into the knockout stages. There have been goals galore for Didier Deschamps’ men and they will be in no mood for complacency, as they will be hungry for more – making Ecuador’s task all the more difficult.
The French have been banging in the goals with ease, as they boast an average of 4 goals per game this World Cup. On taking an average over the two games, France’s attacking numbers are exactly twice as good as Ecuador’s. They have had 20 shots on target per game, compared to Ecuador’s 10. They have also created 15 chances per game, which doubles Ecuador’s 7.
Players to watch –
A certain Enner Valencia has been a pleasant surprise package for Ecuador, having scored 3 goals in his 2 outings. He would be hoping to score again tonight in order to help his team go through.
Ecuador however will have a major problem to deal with, that being of forward Karim Benzema. The Real Madrid front man has been in explosive form, who has also scored 3 goals in 2 games.
Ecuador need to match Switzerland’s result in order to progress. With Switzerland expected to win against Honduras, I do not see Ecuador managing to beat France. I am going for a draw between them coupled with a win for Switzerland, and Ecuador to then unfortunately crash out of the competition.