Opinion: France is a dark horse for the 2018 world cup

Kylian Mbappe (10) in the France v Colombia match at the 2018 world cup. Photo by James Marsh/BPI/REX/Shutterstock (9474737cf)

France is one of the dark-horses to win the 2018 world cup. Les Blues have a young squad at their disposal which also includes world-class talents such as the likes of Antoine Griezmann, Raphael Varane, Paul Pogba and Alexandre Lacazette and goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.

One of the strengths of the current French team is that they have the most depth of any team heading into the tournament. They will have a world-class replacement for almost every starter that will take to the field during their first group stage game against Australia on June 16.

The French also are likely to have some of the world’s best young talents in their squad, such as Kylian Mbappe, Thomas Lemar, Ousmane Dembele, Adrien Rabiot, Bernard Mendy, Tiemoue Bakayoko, Nabil Fekir, Corentin Tolisso and Manchester United’s Anthony Martial within their squad.

Though they were runners-up during Euro 2016, France was arguably the best team during the tournament and was unlucky to have lost during the final as Eder scored the winner for Portugal in the final during extra time.

They also have the midfield powerhouse in N’Golo Kane. Though Chelsea has been below par in their Premier League title defense this season, Kante has emerged as one of the world’s best midfielders during recent years as he helped Leicester City shockingly win the League in 2015-16 and once again played a key role for Chelsea as they triumphed during the 2016-17 English top-flight season.

If France is to win the world cup, Kante is likely to play a key role for them. He has earned comparisons to French football legend Claude Makelele and is a strong defender, with the ability to make good tackles and who keeps winning and retain possession.

Manager Didier Deschamps will hope that his team would have learned valuable lessons from their final defeat against Portugal during Euro 2016 and they will be no doubt hoping to go all the way in Russia.