Wednesday, 14 March 2007

Preview France v Scotland

France can still win the 6 nations and probably have the best chance on Super Saturday.
Strategically the advantages are all on their side.

1) Playing at home - Scotland fans don't travel so the French will have huge support. It is their stadium they will feel at home and know the pitch well.
2) Revenge on Scotland for last years defeat - A big motivational boost to the players
3) They will want to bounce back after defeat against England - Again these players will want to prove them selves in a world cup year and regain some pride.
4) Will have seen the Italy v Ireland game and know what they must do to win.
5) They will stop experimenting and field their best side ensure victory. Against England they changed their side yet again still looking for that magic selection.

Scotland will go with their "active defense", but the French will look to blitz and charge down the Scottish kicks, as it has become an obvious weakness. The French will try and prevent the Scots slowing down the ball and will take the resulting penalties Scotland give away. Scotland will rely totally Paterson to get them the penalties and build a score line. Yet they will actually need the ball to do this and I believe the French will totally dominate in the forwards.

Overall the French have the better team and players, plus the strategic advantages discussed above. The one thing against the French and for Scotland is no one expects Scotland to win on Saturday, so they have nothing to lose at the moment. If Ireland win well against Italy it may allow Scotland to frustrate the French and capitalise on an errors brought about by forcing the game to get the points difference up.

The tone of the weekends games will depend on the result of the Italy V Ireland game. From that the French will know what to do and then so will England. If the French win convincingly England win just concentrate on the win securing 2nd/3rd place on points difference depending on the Italy v Ireland result.

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