England vs France predicted line-ups: Team news ahead of World Cup quarter-final tonight

Will England’s 56-year wait for a second World Cup trophy come to an end in Qatar? If that is to happen, Gareth Southgate’s team must first navigate a challenging quarter-final with France.

England enter this tie on the back of a semi-final run at the last World Cup and a runners-up finish at last summer’s Euros, but France are defending champions here and have already broken the curse of winners crashing out in the group stage at their next attempt.

Les Bleus also count Kylian Mbappe among their ranks, the young forward arguably the best player in the world right now and having already scored five goals in Qatar.

Kyle Walker is expected to be deployed at right back in a bid to contain and neutralise the 23-year-old, and while the England defender is one of the fastest around, even he may struggle against Mbappe here.

Here’s all you need to know.

When is it?

The match is scheduled to kick off at 7pm GMT (10pm local time) on Saturday 10 December.

The fixture is set to take place at the Al-Bayt Stadium in Al Khor.

How can I watch it?

England vs France will air live on ITV 1 in the UK, and it will stream live on the broadcaster’s ITVX website and app.

What is the team news?

Raheem Sterling is not expected to face France despite returning to England’s World Cup squad in Qatar, as Gareth Southgate is concerned over his lack of preparation time. Sterling returned to England this week after his home was targeted by burglars, but the forward is back in Qatar in time for this quarter-final.

Elsewhere, Declan Rice is fit to face the defending champions after missing a training session due to illness earlier this week, while Callum Wilson has shaken off an injury niggle.

France star Mbappe missed training on Tuesday due to an apparent ankle issue, but the forward was back on the pitch a day later, fortunately for Les Bleus.

Predicted line-ups

England XI: Pickford; Walker, Stones, Maguire, Shaw; Henderson, Rice, Bellingham; Foden, Kane, Saka.

France XI: Lloris; Kounde, Varane, Upamecano, T Hernandez; Tchouameni, Rabiot, Griezmann; Dembele, Giroud, Mbappe.

Odds

England - 2/1

France - 29/20

Draw (90 minutes only) - 9/4

Via Betfair.

Prediction

Some more pessimistic England fans have claimed that France will steamroll Southgate’s side. The truth is that, even with France as favourites, games like this tend to be cagey, which is worth bearing in mind. England’s last two major tournament exits have come after the team has led, so don’t be surprised if they score first here – only to be undone by France’s greater quality in the long run. England 1-2 France after extra time.