Panama vs. France: Top Storylines, Odds, Live Stream for Women’s World Cup 2023
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France has a clear path to capturing first place in Group F at the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
The first-place Les Bleues take on already-eliminated Panama on Wednesday in Sydney (6 a.m. ET, FS1, FoxSports.com and Fox Sports app).
France moved into its current position with a win over Brazil in its second group-stage game. The South Americans and Jamaica still have a path to finish first, but that can only happen if the European side suffers a stunning loss.
The French should use the Panama match as a tune-up for the knockout round, which could start with a blockbuster contest against Germany.
Wendie Renard and Co. would love to face an easier opponent in the round of 16, but they can’t risk messing around against Panama to set up a better matchup.
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Photo credit should read Chris Putnam/Future Publishing via Getty Images
France (-20000; bet $20,000 to win $100)
Panama (+3500; bet $100 to win $3,500)
Over 4.5 Goals (+125)
Under 4.5 Goals (-155)
Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook
France Needs to Use Match as Knockout Round Tune-Up
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Joe Prior/Visionhaus via Getty Images
If the group-stage standings remain the same after Matchday 3, France will be in line for a round-of-16 clash with Germany.
Les Bleues can’t risk turning in an average performance against Panama because there is a chance they could be eliminated on Wednesday. That would happen if they lost and Jamaica and Brazil played to a draw. The Seleção own the superior goal difference over their European rivals.
Instead of settling for a draw that may earn the team second place, France should use Wednesday’s match as preparation for tougher tests to come in the knockout round.
An all-out onslaught on the Panama goal would be a terrific sign of that. La Marea Roja are obviously not at the same level of Germany and others, but France can at least play to its own highest potential in Sydney.
France manager Herve Renard could also use Wednesday’s match as a chance to give Eugenie Le Sommer, Wendie Renard and others some rest after 45 or 60 minutes to keep them fresh for the next stage of the competition.
Ideally, Les Bleues would burst out to a multi-goal lead before halftime and then rotate in some players off the bench in the second half to finish off the victory and earn some rest.
Panama in Search of 1st-Ever Women’s World Cup Point
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Will Russell – FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images
Panama is looking to leave Australia with its first-ever Women’s World Cup point.
The Central American side was outclassed by Brazil in its opening match and then fell short on a set-piece concession against Jamaica.
A loss to France would make Panama the fourth side to leave the tournament without a point after Costa Rica, Vietnam and Haiti already did so.
A victory seems highly unlikely given what France just produced against Brazil, but a draw could be in play if Les Bleues want to get risky and play for second place.
Panama needs a superb performance to pick up a draw and shake up the order of Group F.
However, it’s hard to see a path to a Panamanian point if you look at the statistics from their loss to Brazil.
La Marea Roja allowed 33 shot attempts, nine of which were on target, and held 25 percent of the possession battle. France could easily put up similar numbers and put one or two shots in the back of the net because of the sheer volume of chances the team could create.
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