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France v Denmark and Argentina v Mexico: Henry Hardwicke's betting tips

There are two cracking World Cup matches between France and Denmark and Argentina and Mexico on Saturday and the Racing Post's Henry Hardwicke is on hand to guide you through the action.

Fabulous France can shine again

What: France v Denmark, World Cup Group D
Where: Stadium 974, Doha
When: 16.00, Saturday 26th November 2022
How to watch: ITV1
Odds: France 4/5, Denmark 7/2, Denmark, Draw 13/5

France endured a rather disrupted build-up to the World Cup after Karim Benzema, Presnel Kimpembe and Christopher Nkunku were forced to withdraw from the squad shortly before the tournament began.

However, Les Bleus made light of those absentees with a brilliant 4-1 victory over Australia in their opening Qatar contest and Didier Deschamps can guide his side to another victory when they take on Denmark. 

Of course the Danes represent a step up in class from the Socceroos, but it may not be as tough a test as the prices suggest. 

Kylian Mbappe and Ousmane Dembele are major attacking threats from wide areas and Oliver Giroud, Benzema’s replacement, is an excellent focal point to the French forward line.

The pace that Mbappe and Dembele offer will cause any side in the tournament problems and the PSG man especially is likely to prove one of the stars of the tournament. 

The attacking threat and speed that France possess is something that Denmark are missing and that was evident when the Red and Whites could only draw 0-0 against a stubborn Tunisia outfit. 

Denmark did get the better of France in their two Nations League meetings this season and, while that competition has gained in stature in recent years, motivation isn't always at its peak given many of the games take place when the club commitments of players are often to the front of their minds.

Kasper Hjulmand’s side are a defensively sound outfit, but the likes of Andreas Skov Olsen, Kasper Dolberg and Andreas Cornelius haven’t got anywhere near the penetration of a French side containing Mbappe, Dembele and Griezmann.

Les Bleus are 4/5 on the match betting market and they make plenty of appeal at that price.

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Argentina can get back on track

What: Argentina v Mexico, World Cup Group C
Where: Lusail Stadium, Lusail
When: 19.00, Saturday 26th November 2022
How to watch: ITV1
Odds: Argentina 11/20, Mexico 5/1, Draw 11/4

Saudi Arabia caused one of the biggest shocks in World Cup history when stunning Argentina in their opening group-stage clash, but La Albiceleste can show that it was nothing more than a blip when they take on Mexico. 

Lionel Scaloni’s side were well fancied in the ante-post betting and their supporters would have expected much better than a 2-1 defeat to the Green Falcons.

However, Argentina took an early lead in that contest thanks to a Lionel Messi penalty and the two-time world champions thought they had doubled their lead on three separate occasions in first half.

VAR ruled out a trio of first-half strikes for Argentina against the Saudis and Scaloni’s men can be forgiven for feeling that they were more in control of the game than the 1-0 half-time scoreline indicates.

It wasn’t a good second-half from La Albiceleste, but it remains that the two-time World Cup winners have lost just one of their 37 matches and kept clean sheets in 13 of their last 16 fixtures.

Goalscoring appears to be a major problem for Mexico and El Tri struggled to create many meaningful chances against Poland.

Gerardo Martino’s outfit registered only four shots on target against the Eagles and they were fairly fortunate that Robert Lewandowski spurned a golden opportunity to give Poland the lead from the penalty spot.

Raul Jimenez is the leading scorer in the Mexican squad, but the Wolves forward has hardly played any domestic football this season and he had to settle for a place on the bench against Poland.

Henry Martín, six goals in 28 appearances, led the line for El Tri, but the 30-year-old Club America forward doesn’t have the goalscoring record to suggest he can have a big impact in Qatar.

Argentina have a point to prove after their opening defeat and they should be backed to put that defeat behind them against Mexico.

It’s 5/4 that La Albiceleste win without conceding on Saturday and that looks a value play.

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