Football - France must be clinical to upset pass-masters Spain

France coach Didier Deschamps said his side will let Spain dominate possession and look to make the most of their rare chances, as the teams jostling for Group I supremacy meet in a crucial World Cup qualifier on Tuesday.


"We will have to use the ball well when we have it, we will have to force them to defend," Deschamps told a news conference on Monday.

Spain are likely impose their possession football on the game at the Stade de France as they bid to overturn a two-point deficit at the top of the standings.

After the first game between the teams ended in a 1-1 draw in October, France edged ahead in the battle for automatic qualification by beating Georgia 3-1 last Friday while the world and European champions could only draw 1-1 with Finland.

"It is going to be like in the first game. I think it's useless to fight for possession with this team," said Deschamps, who side have ten points from their four qualifiers.

A draw would be enough for France to stay top with three matches left to play, yet Les Bleus are targeting a victory that would almost certainly condemn Spain to the playoffs.

"When I prepare a team it's always to win. Then, if we draw, we'll take it," said Deschamps, who refused to give any hints about his starting lineup.

He was pleased, however, that Spain would be without injured fullback Jordi Alba.

"That's not insignificant," he said with a smile, adding that Spain would start the game as favourites.

"We have three more points than after the first game (against Spain) and a two-point lead but the best team will be in front of us," said Deschamps.

"We have more confidence but nothing below our absolute best will do."

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