Didier Deschamps’ France are in action on Wednesday evening against Bosnia (Match betting – France 1/6, Bosnia 18/1, draw 13/2) as they seek to get back on the winning trail following their early Euro 2020 exit.
The reigning World Cup winners (2022 World Cup outright 11/2JF) were expected to go far into the tournament this summer but were defeated by Switzerland in one of the best games the competition has ever seen in June.
A topsy-turvy contest eventually led to penalty shootout heartbreak with Kylian Mbappe, Paul Pogba and co underachieving, given their talent.
In theory, the match against Bosnia should provide them with a perfect springboard to get back to winning ways – the visitors haven’t won a game since November 2019 in a run which stretches to 13 games.
France on the other hand are unbeaten in 90 minutes in their last 11, dating back to a surprise 2-0 loss against Finland in a friendly.
Elsewhere, Louis van Gaal takes charge of the Netherlands for the first time since returning to the managerial hot seat.
It will be the third time the wily Dutchman debuts in the dugout and his side face a trip to Norway (Match betting – Norway 3/1, Netherlands 10/11, draw 11/4).
Group G is certainly very tight with just one point separating Turkey at the top and Norway in fourth with the Netherlands and Montenegro sandwiched in between.
Croatia, who were runners-up in 2018, travel to Russia (Match betting – Russia 7/4, Croatia 17/10, draw 11/5), whom they defeated on the way to the final.
Like France, they were involved in a mesmeric round of 16 game when they were beaten by 5-3 by Spain after extra time.
Undoubtedly, they are a side that are past the peak of their powers but they still possess a lot of quality.
Goals are to be expected with Croatia failing to score in just three games since October 2018.