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France - Spain Preview: European powerhouses set for Paris showdown

25 March 2013 08:45



France have no fresh injury worries ahead of Tuesday's vital World Cup qualifier against Spain at Stade de France.

Coach Didier Deschamps is set to revert to a 4-3-3 formation, with Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud expected to spearhead the attack ahead of the out-of-form Karim Benzema.

Patrice Evra and Yohan Cabaye are likely to return to the starting line-up after being unused substitutes in the 3-1 win over Georgia, while youngsters Raphael Varane and Paul Pogba may keep their place in the side after solid debuts.

Defender Jordi Alba is unavailable for Spain after picking up a thigh injury in the 1-1 draw against Finland.

David Silva also misses out through suspension, but fellow playmaker Xavi, who missed the game in Gijon with a hamstring problem, was able to train with the squad on Saturday and is expected to start.

France are on a 13-match unbeaten run in World Cup and European Championship qualifiers (W9, D4).

Les Bleus have won just one of their last six encounters against Spain, losing four.

Mathieu Valbuena (pictured, right) has scored three goals in his last three appearances for France.

Spain are on a 19-match unbeaten run (W14, D5) stretching back to November 2011.

The Iberian outfit have won their last four away matches, including friendlies.

Vicente del Bosque overtook Ladislao Kubala's record for overseeing the most number of games as Spain boss in Friday's qualifier against Finland. The 62-year-old has taken charge of 69 internationals, winning 57.

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Info

0 - 1

Spain

W L W L L
Competition
WC Qualification Europe
Date
26 March 2013
Kick-off
21:00
Half-time
0 - 0
Full-time
0 - 1
Venue
Stade de France (Paris)
Attendance
78329

Goals

0 - 1
58' Pedro
 (assist by Nacho Monreal)

Lineups

# Player Bookings
1
15
3
21
4
7
12 68'
8
6 54'
19 77' 78'
10
Coach: D. Deschamps
# Player Bookings
12
15
19
17 86'
3
6
14
8 32'
16
7
11 58'
Coach: Del Bosque

Substitutes

# Player Bookings
22
10 78'
13
2
5
20
23
4
9
1
18

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