World Cup 2018, France vs Australia: What time is kick-off, what TV channel is it on and what is our prediction? 

What is it?

Group C gets under way with 1998 World Cup winners France opening up their Russian campaign against Australia. 

When is it?

Saturday, June 16.

What time is kick off?

The sheer number of World Cup matches to be played means that this game has been scheduled in for the unorthodox time of 11am UK time.

What TV channel is it on?

The match is live and exclusive on BBC One, with coverage and build up beginning from 10:30am.

Where is it being played?

The Kazan Arena in Kazan, which has the largest big screen in the whole of Europe.

What’s the team news?

Early reports suggest France head coach Didier Deschamps is ready to favour youth in his first team selection.

Deschamps is expected to name 31-year-old striker Olivier Giroud on the bench, despite boasting an impressive record of 34 goals in 71 appearances for Les Bleus.

That means Kylian Mbappe, 19, Ousamane Dembele, 21 and Antoine Griezmann, 27, could all start up front in a fearsome attacking trio. 

Kylian Mbappe and Ousmane Dembele could start alongside each other in a youthful front-line for France


“We are three players who appreciate each other. We put our egos on the side,” said Mbappe, who added he was “100 percent” after taking a knock on his ankle at training earlier this week.

The PSG striker collapsed in a heap following a heavy challenge from defender Adil Rami. 

However the 19-year-old moved to calm fears he could miss the start of the tournament with a tweet insisting he was fine.

 «I’m fine. It’s just a hit so it doesn’t matter but thanks. It was not nasty,» he wrote.

The former Monaco forward said he believed France had one of the best frontlines in Russia.

“There are not a lot of teams who have a better attacking lineup than us.

“It can be a strength. We can bring some carefreeness, some joie de vivre in a competition where pressure is always weighing on the squad,” the striker added.

Aston Villa midfielder and long-time Australia captain Mile Jedinak is facing a battle to be selected for the first game after Aaron Mooy and Massimo Luongo were paired during Socceroos training sessions this week.  

What are they saying?

Socceroos striker Tim Cahill, who is going into his fourth World Cup, says he is not entertaining any thoughts of retirement ahead of Australia’s opening game.

«When it comes to being physically and mentally ready, you guys can look at the game time but I have been lucky. I spent a whole year getting ready for three games,» said Cahill.

«Now that I’m actually here and I can talk about it, it’s amazing. It’s every kid’s dream.»

Tim Cahill is playing in his fourth World Cup 

Getty Images 

«I’ll be so excited and so happy just to be able to step on the pitch.

«If I get on that pitch, I know that I’m going to make sure I’m going to try and make something happen.

«After that, I’m in a different world. I’d love to join the greats, being an Australian … to do something special for my country.»

What are the betting odds?

France win 1/4

Australia win 10/1

Draw 11/2

What’s our prediction? 

France have one of the most potent attacking line ups in the tournament and, if Didier Deschamps can make them gel, they will be one of the favourites to win the lot.

Prediction: France 4-0 Australia

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