IT’S the glamour friendly of a busy Thursday night. Chris Graham (@chrisgraham79) takes a look at the odds.
France v Brazil | Thursday 20:00 | ITV4
Ah, the memories. Ronaldo’s omission then readmission. Zidane’s header. Petit’s breakaway stoppage-time goal. Yes, I’m talking about the 1998 World Cup Final between France and Brazil. The sides meet again in Paris on Thursday night and there’s not much to separate the pair in the betting.
Wind the clock back nine months and both left the World Cup full of frustration. France meekly limped out to Germany in the Quarter-Finals, while Brazil were utterly destroyed by the same side in the semi-finals.
France of course have no competitive games to play at the moment as they host the 2016 European Championships. Post-World Cup wins over Portugal, Sweden and the improving Armenia have impressed and you can be sure this side will take this game seriously.
For Brazil, it’s been an impressive response under Dunga to arguably their lowest ever moment against Germany in July. Six games, six wins under their 1994 captain and five clean sheets along the way.
Wins over Argentina and Colombia from their own region, alongside a pair of 4-0 victories over Japan and Turkey have been the highlights of their post-World Cup endeavours.
I wouldn’t advise having a large stake on this match – it’s too hard to call. The bookmakers are also struggling to separate the sides with less than a quarter of a point between them in most books.
The vibe I get is that both sides are in form, there won’t be a huge amount of pressure on the game, but at the same time they’ll both want to maintain their unbeaten post-World Cup records.
I’m going to swerve all the short-price options and place a lone bet on this game finishing 1-1 at 11/2 with 888 Sport. By all means jump on the Both Teams To Score at 10/11 with William Hill if you’re looking for something a bit more certain but I’m reluctant to play at those kind of odds in this kind of game.
Brazil have conceded just one goal since the World Cup, but the French have notched in all six of their post-Brazil games and will surely try to please their fans here. Keep it simple, keep it fun.
France v Brazil – 1-1 Draw (11/2 888 Sport)