France against Netherlands is the last of the four quarter-finals at Euro 2022, pitting together a team that set the tournament alight on matchday one of the group stage and the reigning champions.
The French, who are ranked behind only Sweden among all European teams in FIFA’s world rankings, have slowed down since thrashing Italy 5-1 and saw a run of 16 consecutive wins stretching back to the summer of 2021 end when they drew against Iceland.
Netherlands, meanwhile, have struggled against numerous setbacks amid a few Covid-19 cases and injuries to key players. They have shown flashes of their full potential but are yet to put together a polished performance over a whole 90 minute match.
The Dutch lifted the trophy in 2017, but the French have surprisingly never been beyond the quarter-finals at the European Championships, exiting at this stage the last three times.
When is kick off? Saturday 23 July, 20:00 (BST)
Where is the match being played? new york stadium, Rotherham
TV channel/livestream? BBC One (UK)
What time does coverage start? 19:30 (BST)
France had a reshuffle in their final group game against Iceland and could bring the likes of Grace Geyoro, Sakina Karchaoui, Griedge Mbock and Eve Perisset back into the XI. Karchaoui is the only French player carrying a yellow card and in danger of a semi-final suspension.
With Marie-Antoinette Katoto out for the tournament, coach Corinne Diacre will pick two of Melvine Malard, Delphine Cascarino and Sandy Baltimore to play with Kadidiatou Diani in the front three.
Vivianne Miedema has recovered from Covid-19 after missing the last two group games, although coach Mark Parsons has confirmed a decision on how much of this game she plays, or whether at all, will not be made until after the final training session.
The Dutch have lost former Best FIFA women’s player Lieke Martens to injury.
Jill Roord, Lineth Beerensteyn, Dominique Janssen, Damaris Egurrola are all one yellow card away from potentially missing the semi-final if Netherlands get there.
French (4-3-3): Peyraud-Magnin; Perisset, Mbock, Renard, Karchaoui; Matthew, Bilbault, Geyoro; Diani, Malard, Cascarino
Netherlands (4-3-3): Van Domselaar; Wilms, Van der Gragt, Nouwen, Janssen; Groenen, Roord, Spitse; Van de Donk, Miedema, Beerensteyn
This game is really hard to call because both of these teams are potentially world beaters on their day and it could be extremely tight.
Each side is features a number of elite players and it could come down to a moment of individual brilliance as to who actually wins it.
France will be blunted without Marie-Antoinette Katoto, regardless of the depth of attacking talent, whereas the Netherlands have Vivianne Miedema coming back. But the French could still edge it.
Prediction: France 2-1 Netherlands
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