England vs France LIVE: World Cup 2022 starting line-up, team news and build-up to crunch quarter-final

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England’s World Cup history: From the highs of ‘66 to penalty heartbreak and Qatar 2022

England play France in a huge World Cup quarter-final in Qatar tonight. The Three Lions face their toughest test of the tournament so far against the defending champions France after topping Group B and defeating Senegal in the last 16 to reach this stage.

Gareth Southgate is expected to name an unchanged team for England’s first ever match against France in the knockout stages of a major international tournament, which should see Bukayo Saka and Phil Foden retain their places in a 4-3-3 system.

The England manager has urged his team to be bold and attack France, who have in Kylian Mbappe this World Cup’s leading goalscorer and perhaps the most dangerous forward in football.

England reached the semi-finals of the World Cup in Russia in 2018 but Southgate believes his team are better prepared for success now than four years ago. With millions around the country set to tune in, this could be the night that makes or breaks those hopes.

Follow live build-up to England vs France, as well as all the latest team news and updates, in our live blog below

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World Cup 2022: England vs France

So, how do England stop Kylian Mbappe?

There is every chance that somebody else makes the difference at the Al Bayt. As several England squad members have been at pains to point out this week, the reigning world champions are hardly a one-man team. There is also the enduring quality of Antoine Griezmann, a rejuvenated Ousmane Dembele, not to mention France’s record goalscorer Olivier Giroud. Who knows, maybe even an England player could be the matchwinner.

But sometimes, the most important individual battle is also the most obvious one, writes Mark Critchley.

Jamie Braidwood10 December 2022 09:30

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World Cup 2022: England vs France

Gareth Southgate says England are better prepared for World Cup success than four years ago and ready to “nail” holders France in Saturday’s blockbuster quarter-final.

The biggest thing for me in the game is going to be our mentality,” the England manager said. “We’ll of course be tactically prepared.

“But on these nights you’ve got to have men that stand up and take on the challenge. That’s the bit that we’ve got to prove to people.

“We’ve had some outstanding nights and the next game is always the most important. It’s against a good level of opponent, one we’re ready for. One, if you’d asked me four years ago were we quite ready, I’m not sure.

“Now I feel differently about that, and that’s because we’ve got evidence over a long period of results.

“Historically we have always talked well, but the evidence wasn’t there. Now we’ve got more evidence and we’ve got to go and nail this type of game now.”

(The FA via Getty Images)

Jamie Braidwood10 December 2022 09:15

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World Cup 2022: England vs France

England calm and confident ahead of biggest test of Gareth Southgate era

It speaks to Gareth Southgate’s confidence in this England team that he had decided his formation and starting XI for the France match on Monday morning. While so many others around the squad were worrying about Kylian Mbappe, and wondering whether Southgate would agonise over a big choice on how to approach him, the manager had already long made up his mind.

That came after a 9am presentation on France from FA head of coaching Steve Dittmer that just confirmed what the England manager was already thinking. Southgate is now so confident in his team that he doesn’t feel they need to compromise for a player like Mbappe in the way he used to.

That has only helped to focus the work of the week. The key for the coaches since then, and especially in the day before the game, has been to distil all crucial points to messages the players can easily digest.

Assistant Steve Holland says that the challenge is that the players are so full of confidence that “when they’re walking out of the tunnel on match day they’ve been through a foundation and a process they believe has got a chance”.

The England squad believe they’ve got much more than a chance. The view within the camp – from players to staff – is that they’ve never been in as good a place going into such a game in terms of form, mentality and experience.

England vs France: Big game preview by Miguel Delaney

Jamie Braidwood10 December 2022 09:00

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World Cup 2022: England vs France

Gareth Southgate defends England tactics and details how to stop Kylian Mbappe

Gareth Southgate has bullishly defended his tactical approach, saying his job is “to win football matches” and “not just have a philosophy”.

The debate around England’s attack has formed one of the main remaining criticisms of the manager, with Southgate commonly perceived as lacking a big idea compared to other major nations.

In what could be construed as a pointed line about Spain and Germany’s World Cup campaigns though, Southgate said: “If you’re going home at the start of the tournament then the philosophy doesn’t wash”.

The England boss also said that, contrary to perceptions, he would rather not play a three-man centre-half line.

Jamie Braidwood10 December 2022 08:52

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World Cup 2022: England vs France

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. Southgate is therefore expected to name an unchanged team, with England keeping their 4-3-3 formation.

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.

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.

Jamie Braidwood10 December 2022 08:46

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World Cup 2022: England vs France

When is England vs France?

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.

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.

Jamie Braidwood10 December 2022 08:44

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World Cup 2022: England vs France

England play France in a huge World Cup quarter-final in Qatar tonight. The Three Lions face their toughest test of the tournament so far against the defending champions France after topping Group B and defeating Senegal in the last 16 to reach this stage.

Gareth Southgate is expected to name an unchanged team for England’s first ever match against France in the knockout stages of a major international tournament, which should see Bukayo Saka and Phil Foden retain their places in a 4-3-3 system.

The England manager has urged his team to be bold and attack France, who have in Kylian Mbappe this World Cup’s leading goalscorer and perhaps the most dangerous foward in football.

England reached the semi-finals of the World Cup in Russia in 2018 but Southgate believes his team are better prepared for success now than four years ago. With millions around the country set to tune in, this could be the night that makes or breaks those hopes.

Follow live build-up to Engand vs France, as well as all the latest team news and updates, in our live blog below

Jamie Braidwood10 December 2022 08:40

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