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The Semi Final Showdown: FRANCE VS BELGIUM
By on October 7th, 2021. Sports

Belgium tackles France within the UEFA Nations League semi-finals in Turin on Thursday 7 October at 20:45 CAT live to tell the tales, SuperSport and DStv for live streaming.

The spot at stake for the both Belgium and France national team is the Sunday’s final against Spain as both these nations look to create  amends for falling short at UEFA EURO 2020. Most people are looking forward to France adding European title to their world crown but their round of 16 defeat at the hands of Switzerland was one among the shocks of the tournament. Belgium went one stage further but couldn’t get the higher of eventual winners Italy during a thrilling quarter-final.

The Red Devils have used the recent European Qualifiers to blow away a number of the cobwebs better than Les Bleus – though no team has a greater lead at the highest of their groups than these two – but the burden of history is against Roberto Martínez’s men. France, the eventual winners during the two duel in the 2018 World Cup semi-finals to create it a clean sweep of victories within the four meetings between these nations at final tournaments.

Reporters’ views

Alyssa Saliou, Belgium reporter: this is now the time for Belgium to grasp their enormous talent and go all the way in a very major tournament. Beaten semi-finalists at the 2018 FIFA tournament and quarter-finalists at UEFA EURO 2020, could it have be a case of third time lucky? France, the side that chattered Belgian hearts in 2018, won’t make it easy. Les Bleus haven’t  been at their best this year, but there’s nothing sort of a meeting along with your neighbours to stir things up. Creativity, flexibility and efficiency. That’s all what is will boil down to.

David Crossan, France reporter: Antoine Griezmann and Karim Benzema dazzled against Finland in last month’s FIFA tournament qualifier within the absence of the injured Kylian Mbappé. Didier Deschamps’ challenge is to induce his star-studded front three to gel the occasion and it might be that a repeat of the 3-4-1-2 system employed against the Finns – giving room for Griezmann to shine from a central position – earns the former Juventus player and coach’s favour as he returns to Turin. the  champions are up for this and keen to show that the UEFA EURO 2020 exit was just a blip.

Roberto Martínez, Belgium coach: “[Hans] Vanaken is perhaps within the best sort of his career. [Charles] De Ketelaere is making the most of the absences of [Jérémy] Doku and [Dries] Mertens: this is often an excellent opportunity for him. He deserves this selection. With Michy [Batshuayi], Romelu [Lukaku], Dodi [Lukebakio] and Charles [De Ketelaere], i’ve got lots of options up front.”

Probable line-ups

Belgium: Courtois; Alderweireld, Denayer, Vertonghen; Castagne, Witsel, Tielemans, T Hazard; De Bruyne, Lukaku, E Hazard

France: Lloris; Koundé, Varane, L. Hernández; Pavard, Pogba, Rabiot, T. Hernández; Griezmann; Mbappé, Benzema

View from the camps

Didier Deschamps, France coach: “[EURO 2020] is behind us now. there is a trophy up for grabs; a semi-final against one among the simplest teams within the world [Belgium]. We gave our all to emerge  here from a awfully competitive group. we would like to win this trophy. within the past, there have been two international titles, the EURO and also theWorld Cup. There are now three with the Nations League, and that we want to win it.”

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