International powers collide when Lionel Messi and Argentina continue their World Cup run against France. Les Bleus went unbeaten through the group stage, finishing with a scoreless draw against Denmark. It was a much more tumultuous round for Argentina, who needed a late Marcos Rojo goal in their final match to advance over Nigeria.
France vs. Argentina Odds
France are the moneyline favorite to win this match, but it’s clear oddsmakers have respect for Argentina’s defense. France is priced at +140 on the three-way moneyline, with the draw valued at +207. Argentina is the underdog at +250, but they have favorable odds getting .25 goals on the spread. That’s where Argentina are a -117 favorite, with France bringing slightly worse odds at -103 according to OddsShark.com
The goal total is set at two, with the under (-110) and over (-105) a toss-up.
France vs. Argentina Prediction
If France is such a better team, why are the odds so close?
One reason for this could be Argentina’s penchant for extra time and penalty kicks. They’ve been involved at five penalty shootouts at the World Cup, more than any other team. And at the 2014 World Cup, three of their knockout matches went to extra time.
In soccer betting, your bet lasts for 90 minutes plus stoppage time. If you’re betting the three-way moneyline, that’s how you get your draw during the Knockout Phase.
This Argentina team is old. Their starting lineup against Nigeria had the oldest average age in World Cup history, and Jorge Sampaoli might make zero changes for France. France, by the way, start one of the youngest teams in the tournament.
A moment of absolute genius from Messi is what keeps Argentina hanging around for penalty kicks. Because that’s exactly how Argentina can win this match. They have experience with the pressure, and a bevy of sure-footed kick takers to swing the upset.
But France should not allow that. France should dominate Argentina in the middle of the field, frustrating the South Americans and tiring out their core players.
France didn’t really blow anyone away in the group stage, posting a goal differential of just two despite an unbeaten run. That’s why there is doubt the French can get the job done against Messi, but it can be silenced quickly. Again, Argentina are slow and old, and fresh off the high of escaping the group stage.
When you’re older, hangovers last longer.
Prediction: France win 2-0