MX23RW : Saturday, September 25 18:27:42| >> :600:1557742:1557742:
Mar 24, 2021 at 7.45pm UK at Stade Auguste Delaune
Griezmann (19')
Pavard (30')
FT(HT: 1-0)
Kimpembe (57' og.)

How France could line up against Ukraine

How France could line up against Ukraine
© Reuters
Sports Mole takes an in-depth look at how France could line up for their World Cup qualifier with Ukraine on Wednesday evening.

Paris Saint-Germain forward Kylian Mbappe has emerged as a doubt for France's opening game of qualification for the 2022 World Cup against Ukraine on Wednesday evening.

The 22-year-old netted a brace before being forced off against Lyon with a twisted ankle, and while Mauricio Pochettino affirmed that his substitution was merely a precaution, Didier Deschamps may be reluctant to risk him from the first whistle.

As a result, Olivier Giroud and Anthony Martial could form a strike partnership after Alexandre Lacazette was once again left out of the squad, and the duo are likely to be fed by the in-form Antoine Griezmann, who scored France's seventh and final goal in their 7-1 rout of Ukraine in October.

Paul Pogba's struggles at Manchester United are unlikely to impact his standing in Deschamps's setup, so he should be handed a start here after finally managing to recover from a thigh problem, and the 28-year-old may find himself partnered by two fellow Premier League midfielders in N'Golo Kante and the resurgent Tanguy Ndombele.

Rennes duo Eduardo Camavinga and Steven Nzonzi have both been overlooked amid Les Rouge et Noir's woeful form, and Houssem Aouar was instead called up for the Under-21s before suffering a muscular injury.

There are unlikely to be many surprises in defence, as the four players who all started last time out against Sweden - Benjamin Pavard, Raphael Varane, Presnel Kimpembe and Lucas Hernandez - should all reprise their roles this week.

If Hugo Lloris plays in all three of France's matches this month, he will go level with Thierry Henry in the all-time appearances list with 123, but he is still some way off the record holder Lilian Thuram, who won 142 caps for Les Bleus.

France possible starting lineup:
Lloris; Pavard, Varane, Kimpembe, Hernandez; Kante, Pogba, Ndombele; Griezmann; Martial, Giroud

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