This weekend’s Nations League schedule throws up a rematch of the Euro 2016 final, as France host Portugal at the Stade de France on Sunday night. It’s a big one in the race to finish top of Group A3, and the battle between these two countries to reach next year’s finals.
Where and when: Stade de France – 11 October, kick-off 19:45
Where you can see France vs. Portugal: Sky Sports
Last time: Eder scored an extra-time winner for Portugal, as the Selecao lifted the Henri Delaunay Trophy after a 1-0 victory over France in this same stadium.
France v Portugal Predictions and Preview
With Sweden and Croatia the other two teams in this group, France and Portugal are the standout sides in the section. Competing for only one place in the Nations League finals, both these teams have beaten the other two countries in the group so far, and progress will come down to their matches against each other.
Kylian Mbappe got the goal as France kicked off their campaign with a 1-0 victory over Sweden, before following that up with a 4-2 win against Croatia, in a mirror image of Le Bleus’ World Cup final triumph two years ago. Didier Deschamps’ side opted for an easier warm-up game for this fixture against Ukraine, with their visitors this weekend taking on Spain.
Portugal also put four past Croatia in beating the Vatreni 4-1 in their opener, before Cristiano Ronaldo notched both of the Selecao’s goals in their 2-0 win against Sweden in their second fixture. That took Portugal’s record appearance maker past a century of goals for his country, and Ronaldo will be keen to add to that here after being forced off injured early in the Euro 2016 final.
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France to win and BTTS
France to win 2-1
France to win by one goal
Aside from that Portuguese victory, France have the edge in past meetings between the countries. Indeed, that defeat in the final of their home Euros was their first loss to Portugal since 1975, and the only competitive one to date. The French won all 10 of their meetings in between, including at the 2006 World Cup and Euro 2000 – a tournament won by Les Bleus with Deschamps as captain.
France are the clear favourites to return to winning ways against the Portuguese here, priced at 23/20 in the latest odds. That’s little surprise with the likes of Mbappe, Antoine Griezmann and Bayern Munich’s Champions League final hero Kingsley Coman in tandem up top.
Portugal have plenty of talent in the final third too though, not least in the form of Ronaldo. The former Manchester United and Real Madrid man is ably supported by the likes of Bruno Fernandes, Bernardo Silva and Joao Felix, so we should see plenty of quality going forward in this match. The away team are the 16/5 underdogs though, with the draw 43/18 in your France vs Portugal predictions.
One to watch for France: Kingsley Coman was superb in the Champions League final, scoring the only goal of the game for Bayern Munich against Paris Saint-Germain. The winger will hope to build on that with a big performance in a huge fixture for his country this weekend and is worth a look for the opening goal.
One to watch for Portugal: Cristiano Ronaldo has shown few signs of letting up despite turning 35 earlier this year. After reaching a century of goals for Portugal, he now turns his attention to catching Iran’s Ali Daei, who tops the list of international goalscorers with 109 strikes. Ronaldo is always in the running to break the deadlock.
Long shot: Both of these teams put four goals past World Cup finalists Croatia last month, while both squads are brimming with sublime quality in attacking positions. We’ve seen a lot of crazy results in empty stadiums across Europe in the last few months, with an over 6.5 goals bet here priced at 50/1. A 4-3 win for France is available at 275/1.