by Tom Allen
France are getting job done at Euro 2012, albeit without greatly impressing,
and they should sign-off Group D with a win.
Victory over Sweden on Friday will take Les Bleus into the knockout stage,
probably as group winners, and, currently on a 22-game unbeaten run, they will
think they have what it takes to go all the way.
An opening 1-1 draw with England was just about the right result, earning a
point thanks to Samir Nasir's equaliser, but there was more to like about their
triumph over Ukraine and that has set them up nicely for a tilt at the title.
Goals from Jeremy Menez and Yohan Cabaye gave France all three points against
the co-hosts and they did well to hold their nerve after the match was
significantly delayed due to inclement weather.
Menez impressed having replaced Florent Malouda against Ukraine and France
also looked more solid at the back having appeared vulnerable versus the Three
Lions in the opener last Monday.
France take on a Sweden side that has already exited Euro 2012 as a result of
two disappointing opening defeats and it is hard to see them putting up much of
a fight against Laurent Blanc's side.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic, excellent in both defeats, is unlikely to put his best
foot forward with nothing on the line and if the AC Milan striker doesn't
produce then the Swedes have very little hope of causing their opponents
Having conceded five goals in two matches, Sweden are clearly suspect
defensively and France rate as more likely victors than the odds suggest.
This could be very comfortable indeed for the French and they will appreciate
having their destiny in their own hands ahead of the game in Kiev where they
will be desperate to return for the final on July 1.
3pts Back France (vs. Sweden) @ 13/20 (Bet