France vs Albania – Match Preview Euro 2016

France will be hoping to build on the win over Romania by facing an Albanian team who lost 1-0 to Switzerland in the first round of fixtures at the Stade Vélodrome later this evening.

France are expected to keep the same starting XI that beat Romania five days ago, the only possible change Didier Deschamps could consider is replacing Antoine Griezmann who had a poor game and was subbed off early in the second half.

Possible replacements could be Anthony Martial, Kingsley Coman, and Newcastle Midfielder Moussa Sissoko in order to keep his team fresh, all three of the substitutes Deschamps made in the first game.

Albania will be without captain Lorik Cana after being sent off for two yellows in the first half against Switzerland. Arlind Ajeti is expected to replace him in the lineup, someone who France may try to target due to lack of tournament experience.

A loss for Albania would seriously dent their chances of getting through to the Round of 16 and would need to overcome a Romanian team, who’s game against Switzerland (Kick-off at 5:00pm GMT) kick’s off earlier, who could be in pole position come 8:00pm.

Previous Games: Just over a year to the day, Albania beat France 1-0 in a friendly which saw Ergys Kaçe scored the winning goal. Since then Didier Deschamps’ team have come a long way and new players have finally started to gel. Albania manager Gianni De Biasi will need a near miracle to perform the same trick again, this time in a major tournament.

Predicted Lineups:

France: Lloris, Evra, Rami, Koscielny, Sagna, Kante, Pogba, Matuidi, Payet, Martial, Giroud
Albania: Berisha, Hysaj, Mavraj, Ajeti, Agolli, Xhaka, Kukeli, Abrashi, Roshi, Lenjani, Sadiku.

Odds: (provided by Paddy Power)
France: 1/4
Draw: 5/1
Albania: 12/1

Score Prediction:

France 3-0 Albania (Payet (2) & Giroud)
(13/2 with Paddy Power)

Betting Tips:

Dimitri Payet and Olivier Giroud will be hoping to continue their goalscoring form and I would back both of them scoring again, with Payet grabbing the brace (15/2 with Paddy Power). I would also put my money comfortably on Hugo Lloris to keep a clean sheet and prove why he is one of the best keepers in the game (France to win to nil, 4/6 with Paddy Power).

Do you agree with my predictions? What do you think the score will be? Let us know on Twitter @OfficialTFF or me personally @kieranmoss97.

France vs Albania, Live on ITV1, coverage starts from 7:30pm, Kick-off at 8:00pm GMT at the Stade Vélodrome



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