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FIFA World Cup European Qualifying

Stade de France (ATT 77,000) 19th November 2013 - Kick off 20:00 Ref: D Skomina

France France vs Ukraine Ukraine

France (3) 3

M Sakho (22)
K Benzema (33)
O Gusev (og 74)

ft

Ukraine (2) 0

Y Khacheridi (S/O 47)

World Cup play-off: France v Ukraine preview

Last Updated: 19/11/13 9:32am

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France: Trailing 2-0 from the first leg

France: Trailing 2-0 from the first leg

Blaise Matuidi has called on France to play "with heart, with guts and with the head" on Tuesday night (kick-off 8pm) as they bid for an improbable place in next summer's World Cup.

Les Bleus trail Ukraine 2-0 from Friday's first leg in Kiev after second-half goals from Roman Zozulya and Andriy Yarmolenko, and must produce a remarkable turnaround back at the Stade de France on Tuesday.

Paris St Germain midfielder Matuidi told the French Football Federation's official website: "For most of us, it is the most important game in our careers.

"We all want to show something different to what we did on Friday. We have to be stronger in the battles and improve our technical quality.

"We have to play with heart, with guts, but with the head as well. We have to score but we cannot afford to let in a goal.

"We know we have the talent to do it but we have to show pride and passion."

In a poll in the country's biggest sports daily, L'Equipe, ahead of the return game, more than 60 per cent of respondents believed France would not qualify.

To do so, they will have to end Ukraine's run of eight successive clean sheets, a national record for which goalkeeper Andriy Pyatov was quick to share the credit with his defenders.

Pyatov told the Football Federation of Ukraine's website: "The guys have been great. This sequence was possible due to their efforts.

"When the goalkeeper is not beaten, the team has a better chance of winning. For me the main thing is the result of the team.

"It is more important to go to Brazil than to set records."

That defensive unit will be missing Olexander Kucher who, like France's Laurent Koscielny, is suspended after his dismissal late in the first leg.

"Yes, we will miss him," said Pyatov. "But we have someone to replace him. We have (Yaroslav) Rakytskiy.

"I think the team understand their responsibilities and will cope with the problem."

The Shakhtar Donetsk keeper believes his side must improve even on their impressive first-leg showing to ensure qualification.

"We watched the first match with France, analysed our performance and the coach (Mykhailo Fomenko) showed us a large number of mistakes," he said.

"Nothing is ever perfect, we learn from our mistakes.

"It will be a difficult match but that's football. There is tension, emotion, but we are very focused on the game and believe in ourselves."

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Matches

  • FIFA World Cup European Qualifying

    Tue 19th Nov - Play-Offs

Tables

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group A

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Belgium 10 26
2 Croatia 10 17
3 Serbia 10 14
4 Scotland 10 11
5 Wales 10 10
6 Macedonia 10 7

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group B

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Italy 10 22
2 Denmark 10 16
3 Czech Republic 10 15
4 Bulgaria 10 13
5 Armenia 10 13
6 Malta 10 3

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group C

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Germany 10 28
2 Sweden 10 20
3 Austria 10 17
4 Republic of Ireland 10 14
5 Kazakhstan 10 5
6 Faroe Islands 10 1

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group D

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Netherlands 10 28
2 Romania 10 19
3 Hungary 10 17
4 Turkey 10 16
5 Estonia 10 7
6 Andorra 10 0

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group E

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Switzerland 10 24
2 Iceland 10 17
3 Slovenia 10 15
4 Norway 10 12
5 Albania 10 11
6 Cyprus 10 5

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group F

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Russia 10 22
2 Portugal 10 21
3 Israel 10 14
4 Azerbaijan 10 9
5 Northern Ireland 10 7
6 Luxembourg 10 6

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group G

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Bosnia and Herzegovina 10 25
2 Greece 10 25
3 Slovakia 10 13
4 Lithuania 10 11
5 Latvia 10 8
6 Liechtenstein 10 2

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group H

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 England 10 22
2 Ukraine 10 21
3 Montenegro 10 15
4 Poland 10 13
5 Moldova 10 11
6 San Marino 10 0

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group I

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Spain 8 20
2 France 8 17
3 Finland 8 9
4 Georgia 8 5
5 Belarus 8 4