Soccer Betting News - SA's Leading Soccer Betting Newspaper: Tokyo Olympic Games: France vs South Africa

Tokyo Olympic Games: France vs South Africa

South African coach David Notoane

It is do or die when France and South Africa lock horns in this Tokyo Olympic round two clash for group A. Both teams have tasted defeat in their opening fixtures with rather lacklustre performances. France were betting favourites when opening up against Mexico only to be properly dismantled 4-1.

South Africa showed defensive quality, but there was no plan of action going forward from head coach David Notoane. Let’s take a deeper look as both nations would surely have gone back to the drawing board for their next approach.

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Tokyo 2020 Olympics, Group A
Sunday 25 July
Saitama Stadium
10:00

To Win
France 2/9
Draw 44/10
South Africa 11/1

France

France were completely outclassed by a well-oiled Mexican machine in which the score line did not flatter Mexico’s performance. Les Bleus did not show any signs of hope throughout their last outing with an extremely shaky centre-back pairing, as well as a midfield who could not get any attacking play going to the 35-year-old target man Andre-Pierre Gignac. With a minus three goal difference and no points after the opening fixture, South Africa will have the better chance to salvage three points and proceed from Group A,

Putting together a national squad that rarely if ever play together and achieving some form of style and identity is one of the hardest things to do in the world of football coaching. The problem for France is that Sylvain Ripoll is just not very good at it. Sylvain is currently in charge of the Under-21’s and has had some difficulty in qualifying for the European Under-21 Championships.

A jittery French defence was exposed by Mexico with Sylvain’s target William Saliba not available for the Olympics, the centre-back pairing was exposed through inexperience of the youngsters Modiba Sagnan and Pierre Kalulu. The three overaged players Gignac, right winger Florian Thauvin and Montpellier’s Teji Savanier were dead weight in the fixture and provided nothing of substance in their last outing. Only one positive from France’s opening fixture would have to be the 60th minute introduction of central midfielder Alexis Beka Beka who rallied his team on for a good spell when arriving on the pitch.

France underestimated Mexico and paid a hefty price for their miscalculations. The game against South Africa will undoubtedly see a more focused play from the French.

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South Africa

South Africa have been rocked due to Covid-19. They produced a rather reserved performance against Japan and will be the underdogs against France. Most of South Africa’s passing was done in their own half unable to string an attacking play together for most of the match. The big striker from Baroka, Evidence Makgopa was isolated an unable to get on the ball. After going down one goal, South Africa felt the pressure and showed somewhat pf a fight for the last 10 minutes of the fixture but were unable to capitalize on a few great chances.

David Notoane seems to be just participating in the tournament and not taking the game to the opposition. A very measured display was on show as he had the team well organized defensively but seemed to be unsure of how to get the ball up into the final third. In an interview prior to their opening fixture Notoane made it clear that this tournament has been an uphill battle and didn’t give much reassurance to fans that the fight will be taken to the opposition, and it showed in the tactics on the field.

Thabiso Monyane and Kamohelo Mahlatsi are still out after their failed Covid-19 tests. The rest of the squad is fully fit and I’m sure are rearing to go against France. The quality of players within the squad is evident as well as the ability to be disciplined in what the coach expects of them showing a great defensive display, but the team looks to be held back by the coach’s tactics.

A quick and decisive approach to difficulties on the will be key against France. Staying settled in on one gameplan and trying to tough it out might be the demise of South Africa. I expect the approach to be the same due to Notoane as head coach, but I do believe the players can find the net if they are given the opportunity.

Prediction: France Win (2/9)
Both teams are not firing on all cylinders and are actually underperforming on either front. France however do have the better quality in personnel and will come away with the victory.

South Africa have the ability to get up the pitch if they are allowed to go after the game, and I believe the pressure to do so is rife. 2/9 on France holds no interest for me, and with South Africa chasing three points just as France are, when the game does open up a little, and it will, AmaGlug-glug can find the back of the net with a shaky defensive structure from the French. A match bet France and both teams to score at 39/20 holds a lot more offer.

Written by Joshua Gaillard