An invigorated Tunisia claimed a famous victory over a French team made up mostly of back-up players but their 1-0 win over the reigning champions was not enough for the North Africans to progress to the World Cup knockout stages.
Tunisia, who needed to beat the already-qualified France and hope for Denmark to avoid defeat against Australia in the other Group D game to advance, roared onto the pitch to challenge a disjointed French side featuring nine changes from the side that beat the Danes.
But their win against the 2018 World Cup winners failed to see them through to the next stage after Australia defeated Denmark 1-0 and clinched second place in Group D. Tunisia thus keep their unwanted record of not progressing from the group stage in six World Cup appearances. French-born Wahbi Khazri lifted Tunisia to their third win in 18 matches at the finals, dribbling into the box in the 58th minute and slipping the ball past back-up goalkeeper Steve Mandanda.
Tunisia vs France updates
DISALLOWED! Griezmann strike ruled out
GOAL! Khazri puts Tunisia in front
Tunisia 1 - 0 France
F/T: Tunisia 1-0 France
17:11 , Harry Latham-Coyle
As for France - we expected the much-changed side named by Didier Deschamps to struggle for rhythm and flow, but that wasn’t good at all from the defending champions. They top the group, as they likely knew they would ahead of the final fixtures, but a few of those who might have hoped to contribute in the knockout rounds won’t have done their chances any particular good in a very, very flat performance.
Antoine Griezmann’s appearance off the bench did keep this run going, though:
7️⃣0️⃣ 𝗰𝗼𝗻𝘀𝗲𝗰𝘂𝘁𝗶𝘃𝗲 𝗺𝗮𝘁𝗰𝗵𝗲𝘀 for France 💪@AntoGriezmann has played in 𝗘𝗩𝗘𝗥𝗬 game for Les Bleus since 31 August 2017… 🤯
An incredible record previously held by Patrick Vieira, with 44 in a row 🇫🇷#FiersdetreBleus pic.twitter.com/7XCLHHaGkt
— French Team ⭐⭐ (@FrenchTeam) November 30, 2022
F/T: Tunisia 1-0 France
17:07 , Harry Latham-Coyle
A victory that will mean plenty to the Tunisian squad and their fans, even it is ultimately where their short 2022 World Cup journey ends. Wahbi Khazri’s goal, the first of the tournament for the North African nation, and that late VAR reprieve mean that Tunisia finish third in the group, with Australia’s narrow win against Denmark taking them through into the last-16 alongside France.
FULL TIME! TUNISIA 1-0 FRANCE
17:01 , Harry Latham-Coyle
OFFSIDE! GOAL RULED OUT! TUNISIA 1-0 FRANCE
17:00 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Here comes Matthew Conger...no goal! The crossed hands of disapproval from the referee: Antoine Griezmann’s goal is ruled out, and Tunisia now surely do have that famous victory!
GOAL! Tunisia 1-1 FRANCE (Antoine Griezmann, 90 + 8 minutes)
16:56 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Tunisian hearts broken in the eighth minute of stoppage time!
Oh, you really have to feel for the Tunisian players, who had played so superbly and were within sixty seconds of a famous victory. But the ball fell invitingly for Antoine Griezmann, who lashed home with his right foot through two Tunisian bodies and beyond Aymen Dahmen.
Hang on - it’s going to VAR! A potential offside? The referee is having a look...
Tunisia 1-0 France, 90 + 7 minutes
16:55 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Tunisia are strong, three men standing between Kylian Mbappe and goal as he picks the ball up on the edge of the box.
Another header clear. A group of Tunisian squad members are watching the Denmark game on a phone pitchside with Wahbi Khazri among them, knowing that this win will, as things stand, not be enough to take them through - but given the history between these two nations, this really would be a famous victory.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 90 + 6 minutes
16:53 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Jalel Kadri gestures wildly to his players, urging them to keep their heads. Time tick, tick, ticks away, the Tunisian fans still whistling and jeering as French try to launch their final offensives.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 90 + 3 minutes
16:51 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Right, a free kick, 25 yards out. Mbappe territory...into the wall!
Cross fired back in...blocked by the goalkeeper! I’m not sure quite how much Aymen Dahmen knew about it, but the Tunisian stopper stood tall and stood firm.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 89 minutes
16:48 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Deflected...just wide! France have come to life. Antoine Griezmann and Kylian Mbappe combine with flicks and tricks and fine array, working an opening for Randal Kolo Muani, whose shot takes a flick of a defender and just to the right of the Tunisian goal.
Eight additional minutes to be played.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 88 minutes
16:47 , Harry Latham-Coyle
A glimpse of brilliance from Kylian Mbappe but palmed away! Flashing feet, half a chance, but Aymen Dahmen dives to his left and diverts it away from any French legs waiting to pounce.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 86 minutes
16:43 , Harry Latham-Coyle
A vaguely goalward French hook hops harmlessly behind for a goal kick.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 84 minutes
16:42 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Tunisia firmly into shut down mode, hoping for a late Denmark goal that would send them through. Ali Abdi, based in France with Caen, replaces the rather more forward mided Anis Ben Slimane, another to have really impressed.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 82 minutes
16:40 , Harry Latham-Coyle
The corner ends up tangled among the bodies sardined around the six-yard box, and eventually in Dahmen’s grateful grasp.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 81 minutes
16:39 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Just a bit of pressure starting to build for the first time. Aymen Dahmen oddly watches a ball bounce behind for a corner when he might of gathered, obviously oblivious that it had last touched a teammate.
Tunisia 1-0 Fracne, 79 minutes
16:38 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Ousmane Dembele is France’s final change; off trots Matteo Guendouzi.
France earn back-to-back corners, the first skewing behind off a Tunisian head, the second headed emphatically away at the front post.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 76 minutes
16:36 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Eduardo Camavinga and Kylian Mbappe exchange passes on the left, Camavinga moving infield from left back to try and leave space for Mbappe to attack from out wide. But Tunisia’s defensive structure is solid, as it has been pretty much throughout.
Ali Maaloul hits the deck after colliding with a teammate; referee Matthew Conger urges him back to his feet, and the Tunisian defender obliges, making a tackle before going down again in pain.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 73 minutes
16:32 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Tunisia answer with their own change: Ghailene Chaalali replaces Mohamed Ali Ben Romdhane, who has worked tirelessly on the left.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 73 minutes
16:31 , Harry Latham-Coyle
And here comes another of France’s big guns - Antoine Griezmann on for Youssouf Fofana.
— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) November 30, 2022
Tunisia 1-0 France, 69 minutes
16:28 , Harry Latham-Coyle
That triple substitution hasn’t much enlivened France. Kylian Mbappe has gone to the left, with Adrien Rabiot moving in to a creative midfield position and beginning to bark orders at the more defensive midfielders, urging them to feed him the ball as he crabs from right to left and back again in search of a promising position.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 63 minutes
16:22 , Harry Latham-Coyle
A blow for Tunisia - Australia have scored and lead Denmark 1-0, which would be enough to take them through.
And here’s more bad news - a triple change for France, with Adrien Rabiot, William Saliba and Kylian Mbappe on. Didier Deschamps won’t simply cede defeat.
Kingsley Coman, Raphael Varane and Jordan Veretout the French players removed.
Tunisia 1-0 France, 62 minutes
16:20 , Harry Latham-Coyle
That’s Wahbi Khazri’s final act - he makes a laboured exit, exhausted after an effervescent performance. Issam Jebali, who started Tunisia’s first two games, is on in his place.
GOAL! TUNISIA 1-0 France (Wahbi Khazri, 59 minutes)
16:16 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Tunisia have a deserved lead!
At last, France pay for their lethargy. Youssouf Fofana dallies on the ball inside his own half, allowing a Tunisian to burgle him. It squirts to Wahbi Khazri, who drives forward, darting left.
Steve Mandanda rushes out as Khazri looks set to weave through, but the forward is wise to it, cleverly stabbing his left foot at it before Axel Disasi can slide in. In to the corner it rolls - as things stand, Tunisia will be progressing to the last 16!
Tunisia 0-0 France, 55 minutes
16:13 , Harry Latham-Coyle
110 minutes of Group D football today and yet still we remain without a goal - neither Australia nor Denmark has yet found a breakthrough in the other fixture.
As things stand, that means Australia will be joining France in the last-16. Plenty of time yet for that to change, of course.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 51 minutes
16:11 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Fired over! That’s a mighty curious moment from Youssouf Fofana, falling to floor with a howl of pain and an apparently injured finger but in the process allowing Aissa Laidouni the ball inside the French box.
Laidouni is, rightly, in no mood to see to the stricken Frenchman, pouncing upon the opportunity and striking fiercely towards Steve Mandanda’s goal, but the midfielder lifts it over the top.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 49 minutes
16:08 , Harry Latham-Coyle
France look to be pressing slightly higher after the interval, perhaps charged to have more of a go by Didier Deschamps.
Tunisia won’t be quelled, though, breaking free of it with gorgeous one-touch triangles. Eduardo Camavinga gets a foot in to prevent them building from a promising position 35 yards from the French goal.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 46 minutes
16:06 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Down goes Wahbi Khazri, up go the Tunisian arms of appeal...no penalty! The Tunisian captain rubs his shin - it looks like Aurelien Tchouameni just about got the ball first as he lunged for it, the faintest brush of Khazri’s right leg on his way to it not enough to force referee Matthew Conger to point to the spot. VAR have the briefest of ganders at it - on we go...
16:03 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Matteo Guendouzi knocks the ball back from the centre spot and the second half is underway.
H/T: Tunisia 0-0 France
15:55 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Certainly none of France’s fringe figures have done much to force Didier Deschamps’ hands come the knockout rounds, though Ibrahima Konate has been solid alongside Raphael Varane. There are a lot of square pegs in round holes in this French team - and it’s rather showing.
— French Team ⭐⭐ (@FrenchTeam) November 30, 2022
H/T: Tunisia 0-0 France
15:51 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Tunisia’s half, certainly. France have looked, perhaps understandably, short of cohesion and connection, failing to settle in to the encounter and too often loose in possession.
Jalel Kadri’s side had the ball in the net early on, but Nader Ghandri was offside before latching on to a free kick, and you do fear that their lack of potency in forward areas might cost them, with France having plenty in reserve if required late on.
HALF TIME! TUNISIA 0-0 FRANCE
15:48 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Tunisia 0-0 France, 45 minutes
15:46 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Matthew Conger, our referee for this fixture, has not been quick to his whistle this evening, allowing the game to flow and permitting a degree of physicality from both sides that more contact-shy officials might not. It’s suiting Tunisia, though Wajdi Kechrida may have to be slightly careful having already been booked - his tackle on the right is firm, but just about fair.
Two additional minutes at the end of the half.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 42 minutes
15:44 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Another promising moment for Tunisia. Kingsley Coman appears to be tripped but the referee rules the challenge is fair, and the North African side spring into counter-attacking action.
Wahbi Khazri holds the width on the right, appearing to time his run nicely as theb all is slipped diagonally inside Eduardo Camavinga, but Khazri can’t find a teammate with his square cross in front of French goalkeeper Steve Mandanda. The forward was offside, anyway - ah, yes, replays showed he had just gone too soon.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 40 minutes
15:42 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Tunisia can’t afford to retreat into their shell. They’ve really hassled the French in possession, but there is just a hint they may be being forced back for the first time as Wahbi Khazri shows some nifty footwork to keep the ball away from three encirling tacklers, only to eventually run out of space and time with support lacking. Khazri raises his arms, calling for greater adventure from those behind him.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 39 minutes
15:40 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Kingsley Coman appears to have been freed up from a French structure that looked slightly rigid early on. He picks up the ball in an advanced position on the right and curls at shin height after cutting back on to his left foot, but Tunisia have three defensive bodies to France’s Randal Kolo Muani, and safely sweep the ball away.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 37 minutes
15:38 , Harry Latham-Coyle
The Tunisian fans are stil whistling every time France have the ball - which isn’t occuring as often as we thought it would ahead of kick off. Jordan Veretout peels out to the left, swapping with Matteo Guendouzi, who appears to have moved more central.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 35 minutes
15:37 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Firmly struck! The ball drops invitingly for Wahbi Khazri, who retrieves his cleaver of a left boot and slices through the back of it powerfully. It’s straight at Steve Mandanda, who braces for impact and punches two fists at it, managing to propel it away. Definitely Tunisia’s half so far.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 33 minutes
15:35 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Outstanding defending from Eduardo Camavinga. He’s not a natural left-back, clearly, but the youngster is such a bright, intelligent player, getting his positioning spot on to survive the challenge of the significantly bigger Nader Ghandri at the back post and turn behind for a corner.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 32 minutes
15:34 , Harry Latham-Coyle
It does feel like Tunisia’s likeliest route to a goal is going to be from a set piece. Having already been denied by the offside flag, they thrice swing in crosses in a period of two consecutive corners, but France are sound enough aerially to avoid concession of a major opportunity.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 30 minutes
15:31 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Steve Mandanda twice has his hands on the ball in quick succession, the former Marseille and Crystal Palace goalkeeper first flopping to his left to make a save and then up sharply to collect an errant lift forward from a Tunisian boot.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 28 minutes
15:29 , Harry Latham-Coyle
A booking for Wajdi Kechrida as he makes a cynical, slightly nasty foul as France begin to make inroads up the Tunisian right. The wing back accepts the card with a nod of acknowledgement.
It remains goalless, by the way, in the other match in the group - a reminder that you can follow that one here.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 25 minutes
15:26 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Chance missed! France, for the first time, cut Tunisia open, space opening for Kingsley Coman as Randal Kolo Muani’s run draws the Tunisian defence away to the right.
Coman’s first touch is poor, forcing him wider, and his hurried attempt to drag a shot back on goal is rather toed into the advertising hoardings five yards or so to the left of Aymen Dahmen’s goal.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 22 minutes
15:25 , Harry Latham-Coyle
There is a fair bit of hostility from the Tunisian fans every time France touch the ball - it is a complex geopolitical history between the two nations, and the North African supporters caused a bit of a stir in 2008 when they jeered Hatem Ben Arfa, who is of Tunisian heritage, when the midfielder opted to represent the country of his birth. It feels like the noise is lifting the Tunisian side, who have been far more energetic than a lethargic France so far.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 19 minutes
15:20 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Eduardo Camavinga looks rather more comfortable moving forward from that left-back role than when asked to defend. He forays up the touchline, connecting with Randal Kolo Muani, who France haven’t quite yet got into the game. The striker wins a throw in high up on the left.
Tunisia managed to force France back, though. They will be pleased with their start.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 16 minutes
15:17 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Olé! Delicious from Aisa Laidouni, drawing Eduardo Camavinga and then leaving the Real Madrid midfielder-cum-left-back firmly on his derriere with a delightful nutmeg.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 14 minutes
15:16 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Wahbi Khazri has begun strongly, fizzing about, but that’s a pretty clear dive - squeezed out by two French defenders and theatrically throwing himself to the deck.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 12 minutes
15:14 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Axel Disasi is forced to turn a header behind after Tunisia again progress well, this time up the right.
Too much curl - the corner kick drifts on to the top of the net with Steve Mandanda untroubled, raising only a perfunctory arm.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 11 minutes
15:12 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Has Didier Deschamps made too many changes? There is precious little rhythm to this French performance so far. It’s a bit of a midfield of misfits who would all most like to be playing centrally, and it hasn’t quite clicked so far.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 8 minutes
15:09 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Offside! Tunisia’s joy is short-lived!
It’s a shame, too - that’s a superb finish from Nader Ghandri, getting a run on the defender and then flicking powerfully through Steve Mandanda’s raised gloves with a leaping volley. But he’d nudged forth too soon - he’s half a yard offside and up goes the flag to quickly end Tunisia’s celebrations.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 6 minutes
15:08 , Harry Latham-Coyle
France haaven’t yet settled. Mohamed Ali Ben Romdhane turns Aurelien Tchouameni wonderfully with a flick from the outside of his boot, showing good speed to stride away from the midfielder, who is forced to clip his heels. Wahbi Khazri will deliver from the left...
Tunisia 0-0 France, 5 minutes
15:06 , Harry Latham-Coyle
It’s a good delivery, too, from Ali Maaloul, curling on to the six-yard line with Steve Mandanda opting not to come, but there is no Tunisian there to direct it goalwards, allowing Raphael Varane to hook clear.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 4 minutes
15:05 , Harry Latham-Coyle
This is a spritely enough start from Tunisia. Anis Ben Slimane earns a corner of a French leg after trying to swing in a cross from the byline.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 2 minutes
15:04 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Tunisia look long, testing the organisation of this new-look French defence with a raking pass. Ibrahima Konate watches it through to Steve Mandanda’s gloves.
Wahbi Khazri then remains down after a collision with Eduardo Camavinga, grimacing and grasping at a sore toe after the makeshift left-back stepped on him. He’ll continue after limping back into the field of play.
Tunisia 0-0 France, 1 minute
15:02 , Harry Latham-Coyle
It is a back four for France, based on the opening skirmishes, with Eduardo Camavinga on the left of it. Matteo Guendouzi appears to be the leftwardmost of a midfield four, with Kingsley Coman up alongside Randal Kolo Muani.
15:01 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Up and away at the Education City Stadium.
14:58 , Harry Latham-Coyle
New Zealand’s Matthew Conger slaps hands with both captains, Wahbi Khazri and Raphael Varane exchanging the customary pennants. Qatar’s Abdul al-Marri leads the VAR team today - I’m fairly sure we’ll be hearing from them at some point during proceedings.
14:57 , Harry Latham-Coyle
The Tunisian fans have travelled in good number to Qatar. Plenty of them have donned eyeglasses that bear the flag of their nation, singing proudly along to “Humat al-Hima”.
Proud looks to the stands for the French players with so many awarded their first, and perhaps only, start of the tournament, as they roar out “La Marseillaise”.
Tunisia vs France
14:53 , Harry Latham-Coyle
The BBC are running a lovely little video package on Didier Deschamps, twice a World Cup winner. His 2018 French vintage didn’t necessarily thrill throughout, but I think the manner in which he guided a side full of big personalities to victory in Russia is a job that looks better and better in retrospect.
Intriguingly, pundit Laura Georges (heavily involved at the French Football Federation) suggests on the BBC that Deschamps’ departure after this tournament is not a foregone conclusion if he can assemble another deep run. It’ll be a big ask given the injury issues, but France have made a solid start to the tournament. Can some of his fringe squad members impress this afternoon?
Tunisia vs France
14:42 , Harry Latham-Coyle
It’ll be intriguing to see how quickly this alternate French team can gel. Kylian Mbappe has understandably been the dominant creative and scoring force in their first two group fixtures but this looks a side built to dominate possession.
— French Team ⭐⭐ (@FrenchTeam) November 30, 2022
That funky French line-up
14:28 , Harry Latham-Coyle
I’ve had a quick consultation with some French football experts (one message and a check of Twitter) and there is a thought that it might in fact be a back three that Didier Deschamps has plumped for. Spare a thought for poor William Saliba, though, who most felt would be a certain starter.
14:23 , Harry Latham-Coyle
A reminder, if it is needed, that we are now firmly in the simultaneous kick off phase of the group stages, with the other Group D encounter between Australia and Denmark also underway in about 40 minutes or so. Through the wonders of tabs, you can follow both LIVE with Standard Sport - do throw by colleague Jonathan Gorrie’s coverage up alongside this blog and stay up to date on the latest twists, turns and permutations as they happen:
How do Tunisia play this?
14:19 , Harry Latham-Coyle
It is a must win game for Tunisia, but their line up suggests they will try to sit in and strike when they can. Jalel Kadri’s side are yet to register at this tournament, but have been difficult to beat since the manager stepped up from his role as an assistant at the start of this year.
14:12 , Harry Latham-Coyle
It’s also worth noting just how few regular international goalscorers there are in this French squad now. Other than Antoine Griezmann, Kylian Mbappe and Olivier Giroud, nobody in Didier Deschamps’ selection has more than five goals for France (Raphael Varane and Kingsley Coman), so there is a good opportunity for someone to step up today - Randal Kolo Muani’s call up came as a mild surprise after Christopher Nkunku was forced to withdraw and has been given the chance to start up front.
14:04 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Well well well. It’s a very “throw midfielders at the wall and see what sticks” selection from Didier Deschamps - it’ll be fascinating to see how exactly his side assemble themselves once out there. It will be a bit of a shame if Eduardo Camavinga’s World Cup debut does come at left back, but it is a crowded group of men in the middle.
Team News - France
13:57 , Harry Latham-Coyle
So much for continuity...
Nine changes for France with progression out of the group already secured. Full back Axel Disasi wins his first cap, likely on the right of a four-man defence that could also include Eduardo Camavinga on the left. Veteran Steve Mandanda gets the nod ahead of West Ham’s Alphonse Areola in goal with Hugo Lloris rested.
France XI: Mandanda; Disasi, Varane, Konate, Camavinga; Fofana, Tchouameni, Veretout, Guendouzi; Coman, Kolo Muani.
— Equipe de France ⭐⭐ (@equipedefrance) November 30, 2022
Team News - Tunisia
13:48 , Harry Latham-Coyle
A handful of changes for Tunisia as the seek the win that may take them through. Nader Ghandri is brought in to the heart of a three-man defence, while Wahbi Khazri is deployed centrally in the front three, with Mohamed Ali Ben Rodhane and Anis Ben Slimane likely to operate as his closest forward supporters.
Tunisia XI: Dahmen - Kechrida, Talbi, Meriah, Ghandri, Maaloul - Skhiri, Laïdouni, Ben Romdhane, Ben Slimane - Khazri.
Le 11 de départ de la Tunisie face à la France :
Dahmen - Kechrida, Talbi, Meriah, Ghandri, Maaloul - Skhiri, Laïdouni, Ben Romdhane, Ben Slimane - Khazri.#TUNFRA 🇹🇳🇫🇷 #TeamTunisia #FIFAWorldCup pic.twitter.com/ePT9pKASFB
— Tunisie Football (@tunisiefootball) November 30, 2022
Karim Benzema return unlikely
13:33 , Harry Latham-Coyle
There were a couple of whispers in the Spanish press early this week that Karim Benzema might, might, be ahead of schedule in his recovery from injury, with reports suggesting that even a World Cup return was not out of the question for the Real Madrid striker. Didier Deschamps quashed that talk yesterday, insisting that the thought of a Benzema recall “hadn’t crossed my mind”.
Benzema has touched down on Reunion for a spot of Indian Ocean island holdaying, anyway - it appears it will again be Olivier Giroud as the central prong spearheading France’s World Cup charge.
France look to maintain momentum
13:27 , Harry Latham-Coyle
France won’t want to take their foot off the pedal too much. Momentum can be key at major tournaments, and with a potential date with Argentina lurking in the last-16, Didier Deschamps will not want an unneccessary slip up given how injuries have already threatened to derail this campaign.
Given the fitness issues, there will surely be changes, but keeping a degree of continuity in selection might not be unwise for the French manager.
Can Tunisia do it?
13:21 , Harry Latham-Coyle
Tunisia have won only two of their seventeen games at men’s World Cups, and while we are expecting a changed French line-up, you’d back the holders to still be strong enough to secure at least a draw.
But who knows - this is a World Cup of oddities, and this is an intriguing fixture given the sometimes complex historical relationship between the two nations. It is a fixture that will mean plenty to the Tunisian players, ten of which are France-born, and the 750,000 or so other members of the Tunisian diaspora in France will be hopeful that they can join Didier Deschamps’ side in the last-16.
Group D State of Play
13:12 , Harry Latham-Coyle
France, as mentioned, are safely through from Group D, and need only a point to be assured of topping the group - though their strong goal difference means they main remain top even if beaten. Tunisia know they must win after taking one point from their first two games to have a chance of progressing.
Australia sit second in the group after their win over Tunisia, and know that a draw against Denmark could be enough to progress if the North African side fail to win this afternoon. A Tunisia draw or defeat will also allow Denmark to progress with victory in Group D’s other fixture this afternoon.
— Equipe de France ⭐⭐ (@equipedefrance) November 26, 2022
Evening Standard score prediction
13:03 , Marc Mayo
The way Mbappe is playing, coupled with the mature performances of youthful midfield duo Aurélien Tchouaméni and Eduardo Camavinga, means France should cruise to victory in this one.
Deschamps may be tempted to make a couple of changes to keep his squad fresh for the knockout stages. But even then, they ought to be too strong for Tunisia – who haven’t scored a single goal in the tournament yet – and should seal victory by two or three goals.
Les Bleus look like a side to be feared later in the competition, and decent bets to retain their 2018 crown.
A 3-0 France win.
13:00 , Marc Mayo
Predicted Tunisia XI: Dahmen; Bronn, Talbi, Meriah; Kechrida, Skhiri, Laidouni, Abdi; Msakni, Sliti; Khazri.
Early Tunisia team news
12:53 , Marc Mayo
No fresh worries for Tunisia, who could be unchanged.
12:47 , Marc Mayo
Predicted France XI: Mandanda; Pavard, Konate, Varane, Camavinga; Guendouzi, Fofana; Coman, Griezmann, Mbappe; Thuram.
Early France team news
12:42 , Marc Mayo
William Saliba, Matteo Guendouzi, Kingsley Coman and Youssouf Fofana are all looking to start for Les Bleus given they are through and can make rotations a bit more freely.
Lucas Hernandez is the most recent addition to their long injury list, which includes Paul Pogba, N’Golo Kante and Karim Benzema.
How to watch
12:36 , Marc Mayo
TV channel: In the UK, the match will be televised free-to-air and live on BBC One, with coverage beginning at 2.30pm ahead of the 3pm GMT kick-off.
Live stream: The BBC iPlayer will broadcast the match live online.
Hello and welcome!
12:28 , Marc Mayo
What a day for World Cup action we have for you!
France, Argentina, Mexico and Australia are all in action as Groups C and D are completed.
We start with a 3pm kick-off between Tunisia and Les Bleus at Education City Stadium in Al Rayyan, just to the west of Doha.
Join us for all the build-up, match action and reaction...