5 March 2020
France W take on Canada W in the opening game of the Tournoi de France at the Stade de l’Épopée this midweek.
France enjoyed a mighty end to 2019, signing off with four consecutive wins, and it will be their first match in the new calendar year. Each of their previous four triumphs has yielded a blank sheet and a multiple-goal margin, with three seeing France win both halves. The ‘clean-sheet theme’ could be of the essence here, considering all four of their last H2Hs have ended with the identical 1-0 scoreline (W3, L1). Impressively, Les Bleues have won all but two of their 14 previous games (90 minutes only), with a 2-1 defeat to the United States the lone loss. France’s defense has been quite robust in that stretch, shutting out their rivals in nine of those 14 matches. But, if they ship the opening goal, France could find themselves in a bit of trouble, as they failed to pick up a win in all six of their last outings in which they’ve allowed the first goal.
Meanwhile, the visitors had gone unbeaten in five straight fixtures in 2020 (W4, D1) before succumbing 3-0 to the United States last time out, which was the first time after seven games that they’ve failed to find the net. Interestingly, just one of Canada’s last 13 matches has ended in a draw (W7, L5), with the vast majority (91.67%) of those results (win/loss) seeing the winner on the day keep a clean sheet (11/12). Kenneth Heiner-Møller’s side tend to win with dignity when they do so – six of their last seven victories have yielded a multiple-goal margin. However, they’ve lost four of their five previous away fixtures (W1), with 63.64% (seven) of their 11 goals conceded across those matches coming in the second half.
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