World Cup Russia 2018


Olivier Giroud shouldn't start for France against Germany

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Football News

As France continue their preparations for their semi-final clash against reigning world champions Germany, there is a sense that for the first time in this summer's event, the host nation go into a match as underdogs.

France have had a smooth path to the semi-finals compared to their opponents, who had to eliminate a spirited Italy side in the quarter-final on penalties. 

The Germans have been very consistent so far in the tournament and have only failed to score in one game, against Poland in the group stage.


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They have perhaps the best centre-back pairing in the form of Mats Hummels and Jerome Boateng, who have been rock solid at the back throughout the tournament.

If France are to defeat their more fancied opponents, then they need to produce the perfect display.

This brings to light the question as to whether or not Olivier Giroud should start against Germany. He might have scored three goals so far in the tournament, but the Arsenal striker still has a lot to prove.

He comes off the back of an impressive season on a personal level, amassing 31 goals in all competitions, including games with the national team, but Giroud's presence up top might be more of a detriment than a positive against a very physical German defence.

Playing as the target man, he is very effective, but when the team requires speed, then he is often found wanting. Deschamps trusts him completely, even coming out to defend his big striker when he was criticised for his display against Cameroon before the tournament.

Benzema was ruled out due to some off-pitch problems, so Giroud and Andre-Pierre Gignac are the only out and centre-forwards the French team have at their disposal. So far in the tournament, typical strikers have found it difficult to play against the Boateng-Hummels combo.

Robert Lewandowski and Graziano Pelle both tried and failed to get anything out of the German defence, so it might be prudent for Deschamps to try a different approach when facing the Germans.

Antoine Griezmann played alongside Fernando Torres in attack for Atletico Madrid and had great success, so maybe Deschamps should turn to him when considering his team for Germany.

He is quick, intelligent, and very lethal in front of goal. His speed and trickery will be a great asset against a centre-back pairing that is quite static. If stretched sufficiently, with Griezmann's speed, Boateng and Hummels might be exposed since they lack the speed to match the diminutive forward's quickness.

If they perform to perfection and replace Giroud with Griezmann, then the hosts can have a real shot at progressing to the finals.

Should France replace Olivier Giroud for Antoine Griezmann for the Germany game? Give us YOUR thoughts in the comment section below!

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Paul Pogba
Euro 2016

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