France take on Sweden on Tuesday night at the Stade Velodrome in Marseille and it would be the ideal chance for Tottenham Hotspur to scout OM’s in-form striker Andre-Pierre Gignac, if they are indeed interested in making a move for the 28-year-old this January.
For Marseille, Gignac has scored 10 goals in just 13 games, his best-ever start to a league season, but with his contract up in the summer, there is a chance that a Premier League club could jump in and do a deal this winter, with OM not wanting to lose their top scorer on a free in July.
With the game being played in the port city, France boss Didier Deschamps is set to start with both Steve Mandanda in goal and Gignac upfront, both plying their trade at the league leaders. There will also be a start for diminutive midfielder Mathieu Valbuena, who left this summer for Dinamo Moscow.
The atmosphere should be red-hot to welcome the trio of heroes, but it won’t be the same without pantomime villain Zlatan Ibrahimovic lining up for Sweden.
Deschamps is also set to give a first-start to AS Monaco left-back Layvin Kurzawa, which will give both Manchester clubs and Chelsea a chance to run the rule over the 22-year-old.
It is ironic that his first full cap would come against Sweden, just weeks after he embarrassed himself with a premature celebration against their under-21 side. France went on to lose 4-3 on aggregate after Kurzawa’s late goal had put France ahead on away goals.
Manchester City fans will also be interested to know that both Bacary Sagna and Eliaquim Mangala should like up in Deschamps predicted XI. Mangala hasn’t quite shown for France why City paid £35 million for him this summer. He will have a chance to shine alongside reported Chelsea target Raphael Varane.
Former Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba will continue to pull the strings in the French midfield and there will be a chance for Dimitri Payet to impress after he has surprised many with his form for Marseille this season.
France probable XI vs Sweden
Mandanda – Sagna, Varane, Mangala, Kurzawa – Pogba, Guilavogui – Griezmann, Payet, Valbuena – Gignac