France entertain Iceland on match day two, in their European Championship qualifying match in group H. The match will kick off on Monday night, at 8:45pm local time. Both of these sides are favourites to progress to the tournament, with the hosts favourites to win the finals next summer, following their World Cup success.

Home Team: France

World cup winners France will be the team to beat going into the European Championships next summer. Manager Didier Deschamps won the World Cup as a player in 1998, and 20 years later as a manager, and now will hope to create further history with this immensely talent group of players. They’ll have been disappointed with France’s failure to reach the UEFA Nations League, following a disappointing defeat to Netherlands, but they know they have bigger fish to fry with this competition.

It should be a routine qualification for France who have many star-studded players at their disposal. Paul Pogba, Antoine Griezmann, N’Golo Kante, Samuel Umtiti and Kylian Mbappe are announced in the squad, and provide the spine for this fantastic side. In the last European Championship, hosted in France, they will have been devastated having lost the final to Portugal, and will hope to secure a famous double for the nation, as they did in 1998 and 2000. Are these French superstars ready for the challenge?

Away Team: Iceland

Iceland, with a small population of about 330,000, have been an official national team since 1930, but had to wait until the European Championships in 2016 to make an appearance at a major tournament. At that tournament, they remained undefeated in the group stage, before knocking out England in one of the world’s biggest shocks. Unfortunately for them, their tournament ended thanks to their upcoming opponents on Monday night.

They also followed that tournament up by qualifying for the World Cup in 2018, where they were unable to register a win, but did manage to get a famous draw against Lionel Messi’s Argentina. Iceland were in the top league for the UEFA Nations League, but were embarrassed by Switzerland and Belgium, losing all four matches including some heavy defeats. Iceland will hope they can return to the form that got them to the two previous tournaments. Can the star players like Gylfi Sigurðsson drive them to another tournament?

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Head to Head

France have played Iceland 13 times in their past, and have yet to lose to them. Winning 9 times, and drawing four times, France have been expectedly dominant. 11 of the matches have been competitive matches, with France winning every match in front of their own fans, back in 1975, 1987, 1991 and 1999.

The most significant match in their history was in the European Championships in 2016, hosted by France, when the sides met in the quarter finals. Iceland had achieved their best ever performance at a major tournament, but were beaten comprehensively 5-2 in Paris. France were 5-0 up in the game, with 4 goals coming in the first half.

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Predictions and Betting Tips

bet now betting on footballFrance are 2/9 to win this match, with Iceland underdogs at 11/1. For the sides to draw, that is priced at 19/4. You’d have to be somewhat foolish not to back France to win at home, and I expect them to win relatively comfortably in a 3-0 win, priced at 11/2. Olivier Giroud, Kylian Mbappe and Antoine Griezmann all scored against Moldova on Friday night, and if all the same players score again, then you can get that at 14/1.

If you believe Iceland will get on the score sheet, you’d be best backing Finnbogason at 3/1 to score at any time. To maximise earnings on a France win, be daring and back them to win to nil at 8/11, win both halves at 5/4 and finally, to score 4+ goals at 3/1.

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