Giroud Starts For France In Peru Showdown
Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud will start for France against Peru in their World Cup Group C encounter on Thursday with coach Didier Deschamps dropping Ousmane Dembele.
France will seal their spot in the knockout rounds with a victory thanks to the 1-1 stalemate between Australia and Denmark and defeat for Peru will end their Russian campaign.
The 31-year-old Giroud will be the focal point of the French attack, with starlet Kylian Mbappe and Antoine Griezmann playing off him.
The 21-year-old Barcelona man Dembele pays the price for making little impact in France’s stuttering 2-1 victory over Australia in their opener.
Blaise Matuidi replaces Corentin Tolisso in midfield in Deschamps’s other change.
Tottenham Hotspur and France captain Hugo Lloris will win his 100th cap for his country in Yekaterinburg, the most eastern city at the World Cup.
Lloris, along with the skippers of Denmark and Australia, backed Peru talisman Paolo Guerrero in calling for his drugs ban to be overturned for the World Cup.
Peru’s all-time leading goalscorer and captain was surprisingly on the bench for Peru’s opening game, coming on in the second half, but the South Americans went down 1-0 to Denmark.
The 34-year-old Guerrero will face Lloris from the start after Peru coach Ricardo Gareca chose him in his starting XI in place of Jefferson Farfan.
Peru are competing in their first World Cup since 1982.
France: Hugo Lloris, Benjamin Pavard, Raphael Varane, Samuel Umtiti, Lucas Hernandez, Paul Pogba, N’Golo Kante, Blaise Matuidi, Antoine Griezmann, Olivier Giroud, Kylian Mbappe
Coach: Didier Deschamps (FRA)
Peru: Pedro Gallese, Luis Advincula, Christian Ramos, Alberto Rodriguez, Miguel Trauco, Pedro Aquino, Yoshimar Yotun, Andre Carrillo, Christian Cueva, Edison Flores, Paolo Guerrero
Coach: Ricardo Gareca (ARG)
Referee: Mohammed Abdulla Hassan (UAE)