France vs Nigeria
World Cup second round
Monday 30th June 2014, 1700 BST, Brasilia
Impressive France take on African Cup of Nations winners Nigeria in the second round of the World Cup. Chris Ellis takes a look at where the game is likely to be decided.
Road to the Second Round
France have put on some impressive displays so far in the World Cup, opening up with a 3-0 win over Honduras before a devastating 5-2 win over Switzerland secured their passage to the knockout stages. A goalless draw against Ecuador sealed their place at the top of Group E.
African Cup of Nations champions Nigeria opened with a 0-0 draw over Iran before securing a vital 1-0 victory over Bosnia-Herzegovina thanks to Peter Odemwingie’s winner. That left the African side needing to match Iran’s result to progress and they went through despite a 3-2 defeat to Argentina, caliming second spot in Group F.
The two sides have only met twice before with Nigeria coming out on top 1-0 in their last meeting back in 2009.
The teams have never previously met in the World Cup.
05 Ambrose Emuobo
• This will be only the second international meeting between France and Nigeria.
• France have lost two of their last three World Cup matches against African nations.
• Nigeria have scored a goal in all but one of their previous 10 World Cup matches against European teams.
• Nigeria have lost both of their previous World Cup second round ties.
• France have scored all their goals at this World Cup from inside the box.
• The last five times France have progressed past round one in the World Cup, they have reached the semi-finals.
• France striker Karim Benzema has scored nine goals in his last nine appearances for his country.
France are overwhelming favourites for this second round tie, with the goals of Karim Benzema set to propel them into the quarter-finals. However, Nigeria showed against Argentina that they possess a significant goal threat of their own and have generally kept things tight at their own end, meaning France will have to work hard for victory.
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