France Battle Croatia For World Cup Glory


As they face off in the 2018 World Cup final in Moscow.

Didier Deschamps has warned his France players they must be calm, confident and keep their concentration in Sunday's World Cup final against Croatia in Moscow.

As for Croatia, this will be their first ever World Cup final and will be looking to upset an assured Les Bleus side.

The first match was the most momentous - a 2-1 win for France in the 1998 World Cup semifinals at the Stade de France in Paris.

Before you lock in your 2018 World Cup picks for France vs. Croatia, you need to see what European football expert David Sumpter has to say. The center back pairing of Verane & Umtiti has been rock solid, and again will be crucial if France are to go all the way again.

However, far from seeing Croatia's extra workload as benefiting France, Lloris thinks it will only have strengthened their opponents' desire to win. I make no predictions about the outcome, except to say the game is likely to draw a massive USA audience, even though traditional TV ratings have been down significantly compared to the 2014 World Cup.

The contest in the Luzhninki stadium is likely to be a tight and tetchy affair. And my favourite player is Kylian Mbappé because he's just 19 and his speed and his ability pass, is just electrifying. The conclusion of this World Cup has all the makings for a great battle, even if it appears to be a lopsided on paper.

France's Raphael Varane celebrates with Benjamin Pavard and Blaise Matuidi after Croatia's Mario Mandzukic (not pictured) scored an own goal and the first goal for France.

Croatia has overcome extra-time and penalties in their last three knockout games and will have the faith the World Cup is only 90 minutes away.

France saw off Argentina, Uruguay and Belgium in 90 minutes to reach the final in Russian Federation, while Croatia had to come from a goal down and survive extra time in all three of their matches in the knockout rounds. Tiredness will certainly not be a factor for Zlatco Dalic's charges who are on the cusp of making history.

Compared to teams of old, this France side does not have any friction within the squad and Deschamps has picked a squad with a rich mix of youth and experience.

The players argued about who should get the ball afterward, with Croatia keeping possession but failing to do anything.

Luka Modric is the driving force of this side and now has his eyes on the biggest trophy of them all.

France is going into tonight's match as the favorites, and Didier Deschamps' men will want to emulate the 1998 winning team.

France have been solid in defence throughout the tournament, their thrilling 4-3 win over Argentina in the last 16 aside.

Watch the match live on SBS and follow all the action on Wide World of Sports live blog.