Euro 2020 Fantasy Football Tips – France
Euro 2020 Fantasy Football Tips by the Hub’s Euros’ expert @CoysFPL.
In this team preview series, Dan reviews all 24 teams participating in Euro 2020 and details their route from qualification, expected lineups, best player picks, under the radar gems and players to avoid.
Route from qualification
France topped their qualifying group, only dropping points twice (both against Turkey). As well as Turkey, they had to face Euro 2016 opponents Iceland and Albania.
They scored an underwhelming 25 goals, and conceded six times: a total only bettered by seven teams (and France played ten games rather than eight). Les Bleus totalled a respectable five clean sheets.
In the most recent Nations League campaign, France bossed their top tier group. They only dropped points once, remaining unbeaten. That meant their points total was the best of all League A teams.
Not only that, but the French had to get past strong opposition in Sweden, Croatia and Portugal to achieve that feat. They kept three clean sheets and scored twelve times.
It’s worth noting that they kept clean sheets in both ties against Portugal, winning in Lisbon 1-0 and drawing at the Stade de France.
This year, France unsurprisingly sit top of their World Cup qualification group. They did disappoint in their opener, being held to a 1-1 stalemate by Ukraine. However, they made up for that with a 1-0 win away at Bosnia and a 2-0 win in Kazhakstan.
France are worthy favourites. They are probably the only team I can class as having the full package and it will take a lot of luck or an impeccable performance to halt them. Deschamps’ slightly conservative approach means they don’t score tonnes, but should be able to limit top opponents’ chances at the other end. They should go the whole way.
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Euro 2020 France expected lineup
Pavard – Varane – Kimpembe – Hernandez
Rabiot – Kante – Pogba
Griezmann – Benzema – Mbappe
Most of the French line-up is easy to call.
However, Lucas Digne could get the occasional start over Lucas Hernandez.
Moreover, Adrien Rabiot’s spot is likely to go to Kingsley Coman in the easier games, which would switch the formation into more of a 4-2-3-1.
The final shade of uncertainty is Karim Benzema‘s spot. He has only just been recalled to Les Bleus after six years out, and moving straight into the starting eleven could be difficult given Didier Deschamps’ admiration of Olivier Giroud.
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Euro 2020 best player picks:
Antoine Griezmann was not only second in the 2018 World Cup charts, but topped the 2016 Euro top-scorer charts. He is one of the key men in the French side and his free role means he is involved in more goals than he is for club side Barcelona.
Griezmann is Les Bleus’ joint top scorer this campaign with five goals in 11 appearances. He also got three goals and nine assists in 10 qualifying caps – which doubled the number of goal involvements from Olivier Giroud and Kylian Mbappe.
He has the potential to be on penalties, although he did miss the last penalty for France. It’s likely to be him or Karim Benzema that will take that responsibility, unless Giroud is on the pitch. Griezmann should get the lion’s share of the set-piece duties too.
Starboy Kylian Mbappe scored three and assisted three in only five qualifying appearances. Furthermore, he has three goals and two assists in his last eight caps.
He has smashed it domestically this season, with 42 goals and 11 assists in all competitions. I think he will be a huge threat on the counter-attack against the likes of Germany and Portugal in the group stage.
Under the radar players:
Other forward Karim Benzema should start, and has the second-best domestic goalscoring record this season in the French side, with 30 goals and nine assists for Real Madrid. There is a slight question mark over whether he will take the spot of Deschamps’ favourite Giroud, however.
Benjamin Pavard only scored one and assisted two for Bayern Munich this season, but offers the most goal threat of the back four. He also has a goal this season internationally.
Other full-back Lucas Hernandez offers about the same attacking output as Pavard, so pick the cheaper option if you’re backing the French defence. He has a goal and three assists this season for Bayern Munich.
Hugo Lloris is the alternative defensive pick to the full-backs. He is likely to rack up a few saves and should be one of the cheaper defensive options.
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Players to avoid:
Paul Pogba only has just one assist for France since the World Cup (in 18 caps). Simply avoid him, Adrien Rabiot and N’Golo Kante.
Of the defensive five, Presnel Kimpembe is likely to be the cheapest, but didn’t register a goal or assist for PSG this season, and hasn’t scored or assisted in his 15 international caps. I am not a fan of him, purely because I like a defender with goal threat and France’s fixtures aren’t good enough to rely on a clean sheet.
Raphael Varane offers a little bit more goal threat, but not enough to justify the extra cash. Therefore, I prefer the full-back options and Hugo Lloris.
I don’t think Kingsley Coman will start in the big games; Deschamps likes to play with a more reserved midfielder instead of an attacking winger in the big games. Therefore, he isn’t a feasible option for me.
Find all our other Euro 2020 Team Previews here which will be updated daily as the competition draws closer!