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Great Battle: Argentina vs France

1xBet evaluates the chances of the participants in the World Cup final.

The Final of the 2022 World Cup

Argentina

What happened in the semi-final

In Qatar, Croatian national team coach Zlatko Dalic has earned a reputation as a trickster - his team made it into the top four teams on the planet, having only one victory in normal time. Dalic's original tactics were especially good against Brazil: lacking the resources to crush the opponent with positional attacks and realizing that it was too risky to “put the bus”, Croatia tried to keep the ball in the center of the field as long as possible, keeping in mind the brilliant play of their goalkeeper in the penalty shootout. And it worked, although in the end, the team had to heroically equalize in the final minutes of extra time.

Lionel Scaloni and the coaching staff of the Argentina national team saw all this very well and prepared an extremely unpleasant surprise for the opponent - the first 30 minutes Croatia played against itself. Albiceleste players held the ball for a long time and did not rush into the opponents' penalty area during positional attacks at all. In turn, Croatia tried to surprise their opponent with tactical innovations a la Guardiola, connecting the flank defender to play the ball closer to the center. In any case, the match looked incredibly boring: the first shot on target was only in the 26th minute.

Such a monotonous game lulled Croatia's vigilance: after the loss of the ball in the opponent's half of the field, the team's defenders missed a pass to Julian Alvarez, who burst into the penalty area and ended up on the lawn after contact with the goalkeeper. The referee pointed to the point and Messi confidently (well, very confidently) scored his 5th goal in the championship.

It was the 34th minute of the first half, and Croatia rushed forward, but after 5 minutes missed a counterattack. Alvarez made a spectacular breakthrough from his half of the field and scored the second goal (someone, ask the ?roatians, why two players could not kick the ball out - Alvarez's solo did not look like a perfect example of ball control). 

The game was done:

Croatia practically did not succeed in the attack (the team missed the onlyr eal chance to score 5 minutes before the end of normal time), andA rgentina in the second half showed why Messi saves energy, moving around thef ield at a walking pace. In the 69th minute, Leo got away from two defenders, beautifully beat Joshko Gvardiol, gave a wonderful pass to Alvarez and the partner had not missed from 7 meters. After 12 minutes, Dalic removed the leader of the Croats, Luka Modric, from the game - in chess, such a gesture would be equated with early recognition of defeat.

Review of the match Argentina - Croatia can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8byeIhoT2II

Pros:
  • 7 time Golden Ball winner who is in great shape
  • The coach who found a common language with him
  • Good atmosphere in the team
  • High movement speed throughout the match
  • Reliable goalkeeper
  • Impressive bench 
Contras:
  • Argentina is not the most athletic team in this championship and the Netherlands managed to take advantage of this in the quarterfinals

 

France

What happened in the semi-final

For some reason, none of those nerds who called Walid Regragui "the first African coach who led the African team to the quarterfinals" for some reason remembered that this man was born in a suburb of Paris and spent almost entire his career in French teams (with the same success Zidane can be called the first African manager to win the Champions League).

However, no one will deny that we are talking about an extremely intelligent person who knows what he wants. Heading the Moroccan national team less than three months before the World Cup, he called up to the team everyone he could find - 14 of the 26 players were born abroad. Having received this high-quality, but very heterogeneous material, Regragui fashioned a World Cup semi-finalist out of it. In addition, his team was famous for its exceptionally reliable game in defense - before the match against France, the Atlas Lions conceded only one goal in Qatar, and they scored that one themselves.

However, in the semi-final Regragui’s strategy did not work – it’s difficult to fight on equal terms with the world champions, but it is even more difficult to plan a rebound in the 5th minute of the game, after which the first goal was scored. Antoine Griezmann superbly opened, received a pass from Varane, left behind a defender, entered the penalty area, and passed to Kylian Mbappé. The French superstar's first shot was blocked, but the ball bounced back to number ten Les Bleus. Mbappe struck again, the ball bounced off to Theo Hernandez, who was left alone, and the latter, with a beautiful kick in the style of Karate Kid, broke through Bono, who came out of the gate, and Ashraf Dari, who was insuring his goalkeeper. It’s noteworthy that seven (!) Moroccan football players tried to prevent Kilian at the time of the second kick, while Theo was left unattended and had time to call home before contact with the ball.

After that, Deschamps' team retreated to their half of the field, allowing Morocco to demonstrate their attacking skills. At first glance, this plan looked very insidious - in this World Cup, the best African team of all time is completely unaccustomed to impressing the imagination of experts with their ball possession percentage. However, the Moroccans have shown that they are attacking quite worthy - several times the French fans probably reached for nitroglycerin and blessed the reaction of Hugo Lloris. The French could also bury the rivals' hopes in the first half, but Olivier Giroud hit the post at the crucial moment.

In the second half, the Atlas Lions pinned the opponent to the penalty area (it turned out that the world champions were not very used to playing in this style), Mbappe's signature jerks did not give any results, and until the 60th minute, it seemed that the French were generally playing in the minority. Moreover: the game was so nervous that Griezmann was regularly seen in the position of the central defender and, it must be admitted that the "Little Prince" played just fine, frustrating some of the opponent's most dangerous attacks. However, the leaders of Morocco soon became noticeably tired (by the 68th minute, the leading midfielder Boufal and center forward En-Nasyri were already sitting on the bench), and the players who came on as substitutes were remembered only for their attempts to scatter opponents with feints. Well, in the 79th minute, the French delivered the ball to Mbappe during a positional attack, he gathered six (!) Moroccan players near him, beat two, shot, and hit the defender, after which the ball flew off to Muani and he scored into an open corner. This time Muani was not thrown alone in the penalty area, but his guardian was so fascinated by Mbappe's technique that he was distracted for a second and decided to just watch beautiful football. The Lions tried to return to the game, but they did not succeed - the French played the rest of the match very reliably.

Review of the match France - Morocco can be viewed here: 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6D--CDugeUk

 Pros:
  • Excellent selection of attacking players
  • An experienced coach who has already won the World Cup
  • Reliable goalkeeper
Contras:
  • As it turned out, France is not very used to "putting the bus" and a higher-class opponent may well take advantage of this.

What to expect in the final?

“We do not have a magic crystal and for this reason, we cannot predict the outcome of the World Cup final” - this is the headline that should have appeared in all media that write about football. But who needs honesty before such a match?

We dare to suggest that the final will be a game until the first goal is scored - the responsibility is too great. The team that can score in regular time will sit in their half of the field and begin to catch the opponent on the counterattack. At the same time, both teams can successfully open a rich defense.

Do you want to know what will happen? Wait until Sunday.

1xBet offers the best odds on the the final game, the top scorer of the World Cup, the best goalkeeper and many other events. In addition, the bookmaker has launched the “Risk-Free Bet” promotion, within which you can bet on the exact score of the match without fear of making a mistake - in case of failure, you willl receive a free bet up to $30. Play and win with the best!

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