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France Euro 2012: Handicapping France’s 2012 Euro Odds

Euro 2012 France: Suddenly Talented French Team Could Be In For Greatness: Over the course of the last 14 years, France’s soccer team has done some truly special things. The squad made it to the World Cup Final in 2006, and it was the World Cup champs in 1998 on its home turf. There have been some awful times in the middle though, and this is really the first time since 2006 that the French have been considered one of the big time favorites to win a major tournament at this type of a level.

With two Euro Cup’s already on their mantle, there is no doubt that the French have the pedigree to win this tournament. Long gone are the days of Thierry Henry and Zinedine Zidane, and after years of watching this team just kind of put together a mixture of veterans that were just truly too old for international competition and youngsters that also weren’t ready to play at that sort of a level, the right mixture appears to be in place, and the draw certainly is favorable for this team to be able to get the job done.

Euro 2012 Schedule for France
Monday June 11th: France vs. England 12:00 p.m. (ET) (ESPN)
Friday June 15th: Ukraine vs. France 12:00 p.m. (ET) (ESPN2)
Tuesday, June 19th: England vs. Ukraine 2:45 p.m. (ET) (ESPN)

When the French were really at their best, they were a solid defensive team. Fabien Barthes was one of the best goalies in the world once upon a time, but since he has hung up his boots, the team really has struggled to try to find the right goaltender. It is Hugo Lloris that is going to be the man in the pipes in this tournament, and he has 33 appearances for his country. The good news is that he has an absolutely outstanding defense in front of him, led by Manchester United’s Patrice Evra and Manchester City’s Gael Clichy. There are already a heck of a lot of veterans from some great squads like Lyon, Lille, AC Milan, and Arsenal in the back of the lineup.

The offense though, tends to be in some question, though. The only striker that has any real experience with this team is Karim Benzema. The Real Madrid striker is one of the best young attackers in the game, and he is going to be a fantastic star to watch in this tournament. He might be the only striker that the French utilize at times. The midfield does have some capability, though. Franck Ribery has been around this team for quite some time, and he has 10 goals for his country. Florent Malouda is also a man that is going to have the ability to do some damage assuming that he gets into the lineup with a ton of other great midfielders on the team.

France really has some impressive wins over the course of the last few months in friendly matches. The team destroyed Estonia 4-0 in the last tune up match, and that came right on the heels of a 2-0 win over Serbia. More impressive in these friendlies though, were a 2-1 win in Bremen against Germany and a 1-0 win in Paris against the United States. Remember that France did have a suspect group to get through for qualifying here for Euro 2012, and the toughest team that they probably had to run up against was Bosnia and Herzegovina.

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We have seen France ranked as high as No. 1 in the World FIFA Rankings and as low as No. 21. Now, the team is ranked No. 14 coming into this tournament, yet we tend to think that that is just too low of a mark. There is no way that we would consider the French to be below the Russians, who are No. 13, or the Portuguese that are at No. 10. That world ranking could be shooting up here by the end of this tournament.

France 2012 Euro Championship Odds & Predictions: There are a lot of threatening teams in Group D, but in the end, we just don’t think that any of the teams in their current forms are as good as the French are. They should get out of Group D, and if they can find a way to be in the opposite draw of the Spaniards out of Group C, there might legitimately be a chance that they can win the whole thing. France has went from the second favorite to win Group D to a +150 favorite. The French also went from +1800 all the way down to +800 at the outset of the Euro 2012 betting odds. Click Here to bet on Euro 2012!

This TSS post was written by:

- who has written 62 posts on Total Soccer Source.

Jack Wilshire has always been a big time soccer nut in England. He has been an avid follower of Norwich for his entire life, and spent many years living right near Carrow Road. Jack has moved to Portland, OR, and though he is thousands of miles away from his team, he still keeps his finger on the pulse of all things involving the English Premier League.

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