The Handicap Super Rugby Round 15

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france18France are the headline act in Group C of the 2018 Fifa World Cup, they are joined by Denmark, Peru and Australia and we take a look at the form, squads and outright betting markets concerning each nation.

 

 

 

Note, odds quoted are an average price, accurate at the time of writing but subject to change

 

France:

Qualification: Qualified as group winners finishing 4 points clear of Sweden (who subsequently came through the play offs) and the Netherlands (who missed out).

Form: France won 7 of their qualifying group matches, drawing 2 and losing just the 1. Their only defeat came in Sweden (2-1) and they scored a total of 18 goals and conceded 6.

In the 2014 World Cup finals France came through their group with wins over Honduras and Switzerland and a draw with Ecuador. They beat Nigeria in the first knockout round before bowing out to Germany (1-0) in the quarter finals.

France hosted Euro 2016 and they were unbeaten all the way to the final where they lost (1-0) to Portugal in extra time.

Recent friendly international form is strong including a 3-1 in Russia in March this year.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Hugo Lloris (Tottenham), Steve Mandanda (Marseille), Alphonse Areola (Paris St-Germain).

Defenders: Lucas Hernandez (Atletico Madrid), Presnel Kimpembe (Paris St-Germain), Benjamin Mendy (Manchester City), Benjamin Pavard (Stuttgart), Adil Rami (Marseille), Djibril Sidibe (Monaco), Samuel Umtiti (Barcelona), Raphael Varane (Real Madrid).

Midfielders: N'Golo Kante (Chelsea), Blaise Matuidi (Juventus), Steven N'Zonzi (Sevilla), Paul Pogba (Manchester United), Corentin Tolisso (Bayern Munich).

Forwards: Ousmane Dembele (Barcelona), Nabil Fekir (Lyon), Olivier Giroud (Chelsea), Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid), Thomas Lemar (Monaco), Kylian Mbappe (Paris St-Germain), Florian Thauvin (Marseille).

Betting:

To win the group 3 / 10

To qualify from the group 1 / 33

 

Denmark:

Qualification: Finished second in their qualifying group 5 points behind Poland before seeing off the Republic of Ireland in the play offs.

Form: Denmark beat RoI 5-1 in the play offs and all the goals came in the second leg in Dublin. In their qualifying group they won 6 of their 10 matches, drawing 2 and losing 2 with 20 goals scored and 8 conceded.

The Danes failed to qualify for the 2014 World Cup finals and in 2010 in South Africa they won 1 and lost 2 of their group matches to exit the tournament early.

Denmark also failed to make it to the Euro 2016 finals.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Kasper Schmeichel (Leicester), Frederik Ronnow (Brondby), Jonas Lossl (Huddersfield).

Defenders: Simon Kjaer (Sevilla), Mathias Jorgensen (Huddersfield), Andreas Christensen (Chelsea), Henrik Dalsgaard (Brentford), Jannik Vestergaard (Borussia Monchengladbach), Jens Stryger Larsen (Udinese), Jonas Knudsen (Ipswich).

Midfielders: Christian Eriksen (Tottenham), Lasse Schone (Ajax), Michael Krohn-Dehli (Deportivo La Coruna), Thomas Delaney (Werder Bremen), William Kvist (FC Copenhagen), Lukas Lerager (Bordeaux).

Forwards: Andreas Cornelius (Atalanta), Kasper Dolberg (Ajax), Martin Braithwaite (Middlesbrough), Nicolai Jorgensen (Feyenoord), Pione Sisto (Celta Vigo), Viktor Fischer (FC Copenhagen), Yussuf Poulsen (RB Leipzig).

Betting:

To win the group 17/4

To qualify from the group 6/10

 

 

Peru:

Qualification: Finished fifth in the South American qualifying group and sealed their place with victory over New Zealand in the play offs.

Form: A 2-0 aggregate win over NZ sees Peru take their place in the World Cup finals for the first time since 1982. Prior to the play offs they won 7 of 18 South American qualifiers, drawing 5 and losing 6 with 26 goals scored and 25 conceded.

Peru’s last major tournament was Copa America 2016 and they made it to the quarter finals where they lost 1-0 to Columbia.

Friendly internationals this year have delivered 4 straight wins over Croatia, Iceland, Scotland and Saudi Arabia.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Pedro Gallese (Veracruz), Carlos Caceda (Deportivo Municipal), Jose Carvallo (UTC).

Defenders: Aldo Corzo (Universitario), Luis Advincula (Lobos Buap), Christian Ramos (Veracruz), Miguel Araujo (Alianza Lima), Alberto Rodriguez (Atletico Junior), Anderson Santamaria (Puebla), Miguel Trauco (Flamengo), Nilson Loyola (Melgar).

Midfielders: Renato Tapia (Feyenoord), Pedro Aquino (Leon), Yoshimar Yotun (Orlando City), Paolo Hurtado (Vitoria Guimaraes), Christian Cueva (Sao Paulo), Edison Flores (Aalborg), Andy Polo (Portland Timbers), Wilder Cartagena (Veracruz).

Forwards: Andre Carrillo (Benfica), Raul Ruidiaz (Morelia), Jefferson Farfan (Lokomotiv Moscow), Paolo Guerrero (Flamengo).

Betting:

To win the group 19/2

To qualify from the group 37/20

 

Australia:

Qualification: Finished third in their qualifying group before beating Syria 3-2 in the play offs.

Form: Australia finished , level on points with Saudi Arabia and 1 point behind Japan in their qualifying group before a 3-2 aggregate win over Syria in the play offs saw them through. They won 5 of 10 qualifiers, drawing 4 and losing 1 with 16 goals scored and 11 conceded.

In the 2014 World Cup finals Australia lost all 3 of their group matches, going down against strong opposition Chile (3-1), Netherlands (3-2) and Spain (3-0).

Australia did contest the Confederations Cup in Russia 12 months ago where they finished third in their group behind Germany and Chile. They lost 3-2 to the Germans in that tournament before playing out 1-1 draws with Chile and Cameroon.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Brad Jones (Feyenoord), Mat Ryan (Brighton), Danny Vukovic (Genk).

Defenders: Aziz Behich (Bursaspor), Milos Degenek (Yokohama F. Marinos), Matthew Jurman (Suwon Samsung Blue Wings), James Meredith (Millwall), Josh Risdon (Western Sydney), Trent Sainsbury (Grasshopper Zurich).

Midfielders: Jackson Irvine (Hull City), Mile Jedinak (Aston Villa), Robbie Kruse (VfL Bochum), Massimo Luongo (QPR), Mark Milligan (Al-Ahli), Aaron Mooy (Huddersfield), Tom Rogic (Celtic), Tim Cahill (Millwall).

Forwards: Daniel Arzani (Melbourne City), Tomi Juric (Luzern), Mathew Leckie (Hertha Berlin), Andrew Nabbout (Urawa Red Diamonds), Dimitri Petratos (Newcastle Jets), Jamie Maclaren (Hibernian).

Betting:

To win the group 19/1

To qualify from the group 13/4

 

Verdict:

France look a cut above their group rivals but there might not be much between the other 3 and I’ve delved deep into the exotics for a selection.

Australia look to have the most vulnerable defence of this quartet, they leaked 9 goals in the group stage in 2014 and 5 in the Confederations Cup last year. I reckon they could well concede 5 or more in their 3 games in this quartet.

 

Bet: Total Group Goals Conceded Australia, over 4.5 at 8/10

 

forumRemember you can have your own say on all this week’s matches on our discussion forum

 

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Pool name: Goodforthegame

Pool code: eirebibs

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