When Ecuador and France meet each other in the final game of Group E play, don’t expect an already qualified French team to sit back and let Ecuador walk away with three points. The French currently sit atop of the group with 6 points and a goal differential  of +6 while Ecuador sits in second place with 3 points and a goal differential of 0.

France has been one of the best teams of the tournament thus far and will look to go three for three in Group E. Rumors coming out of the French camp this week have said that Didier Deschamps will most likely sit a majority of his regular starting lineup. Loic Remy is rumored to be the one to replace Karim Benzema up top, despite the Real Madrid striker being one of the best players in the tournament to date. Even with some of the starters most likely sitting out, don’t be surprised to see France deploying their dangerous 4-3-3 counter-attacking formation again.  

Ecuador will come into this one needing three points to have a shot at advancing. So look for them to take some chances pushing forward. Ecuadorian coach Reinaldo Rueda will most likely use a 4-4-2 formation again with full backs Juan Carlos Paredes and Walter Ayovi pushing up in support of the Ecuadorian midfield. The man they will try to target will be Enner Valencia, as he has scored three goals in the first two games. The Ecuadorians are at their best when they can work their way up the field from the wings. They will surely try to use that tactic again against the French.

Ecuador will have to be weary of Yohan Cabaye and Mathieu Valbuena pushing forward as their defense has been shaky to say the least thus far. I do think that the French will have some trouble with Valencia up top, but the French side has looked too good to slip up to the Ecuadorians now.

My prediction: France wins 3-1

Betting odds courtesy of Bovada.lv:

Ecuador:   +½  (+140)   //      +450 Moneyline
France:  -½  (-170)    //   -170 Moneyline
Draw +315