The current World Cup holders come face to face with Switzerland for the first time since their 0-0 draw five years ago.
France had two wins and a draw in their group stage matches whereas Switzerland have a mixed bag of results with one win, draw and loss to their names and still managed to qualify as one of the best third placed teams.
No side has the home advantage here though as the tie is going to take place in The Arena Națională in Bucharest which in turn is hosting its very first European Championship knockout tie.
- Head to head:
In their last five previous meetings France W1, D4 where they have scored just six and conceded just three goals along the way.
France are 1/53 to win the game and Switzerland are 7/00 to win the game.
- Previous defensive record:
France were held to a second consecutive draw, 2-2 to current holders Portugal, after their shock draw with Hungary in matchday two. Switzerland emphatically saw off Turkey 3-1 in their final group stage match to ensure a third place finish.
- Players to watch:
With his two strikes against Portugal last time out, France’s Karim Benzema has scored four braces across his last six goalscoring international appearances. Whereas Switzerland have won 12 (an 85.71% majority) of the 14 competitive matches that have seen Xherdan Shaqiri get on the scoresheet.
- Team News:
Ousmane Dembele is ruled out of the tournament with a thigh injury and Marcus Thuram, Lucas Digne and Lucas Hernandez are doubts with a groin, thigh and knee injury (France).
Misses next match if booked: Griezmann, Hernández, Kimpembe, Lloris, Pavard (France)
Misses next match if booked: Embolo, Gavranović, Mbabu, Schär, Xhaka (Switzerland)
- Predicted Line-ups:
France possible line-up: Lloris; Pavard, Varane, Kimpembe, Hernández; Pogba, Kanté; Coman, Griezmann, Mbappé; Benzema
Switzerland possible line-up: Sommer; Elvedi, Akanji, Rodríguez; Widmer, Freuler, Xhaka, Zuber; Shaqiri; Embolo, Seferović
Didier Deschamps, France coach: “Winning the group was the most important thing and that’s what we did. We need to rest now and get ready for the start of a new competition.”
Breel Embolo, Switzerland forward: “For me, personally, it doesn’t really matter [if I score or not]. The main thing is that we get into the next round. I’m generally feeling very good about the whole set-up. We have a very good team. Even in the qualification stage, it was always about teamwork.”
Last six form guide:
Despite a tight group finish, France will be full of confidence after overcoming rivals Germany and Portugal to finish first in the Group of Death by one point and they are also enjoying a run of 19 consecutive competitive matches without a loss (W14, D5) which they will be looking to add to.
Although the Swiss could only finish third behind Italy and Wales they were the second highest FIFA ranked team in Group A and are definitely underdogs in this tie. But they will be weary as they have been eliminated at this stage in each of their last three major tournaments.
Switzerland have a tough job against Les Bleus especially as France will be major favourites as they look to add the European Championship trophy to their World Cup title they won three years ago.