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France come into UEFA Euro 2024 as the favorites to lift the title as Didier Deschamps' men open their tournament against Austria on Monday. Les Bleus fell short in 2020 after going to the final on home soil in 2016. This time the French will go again with superstar Kylian Mbappe now leading the way as captain. Ralf Rangnick and his Austrian side stand in the way, though, and this opening meeting in Düsseldorf could set the tone for how tricky Group D could actually be for France.

For now, Deschamps' squad has a relatively clean bill of health, and has not been dealt injury blows to the level of severity that all of his opposite numbers have. Rangnick has been deprived of David Alaba while Poland are now without Robert Lewandowski for at least one or two games and Frenkie de Jong as well as Teun Koopmeiners are the latest absences for the Netherlands. Les Bleus, admittedly, is the one nation in world soccer that you would expect to handle any injury crisis fairly well.

With the big clash with Oranje in Leipzig coming in game two before facing the Polish Eagles in Dortmund to close Group D, the French cannot afford to slip up here. Austria have the potential to be tricky customers, but pre-tournament will be expected to scrap with Poland for third place. If they can get off to a solid start and perhaps avoid defeat, the pressure could be on whoever comes off worse in the second game.

Here are our storylines, how you can watch the match and more:

How to watch and odds

  • Date: Monday, June 17 | Time: 3 p.m. ET
  • Location: Düsseldorf Arena - Düsseldorf, Germany
  • TV: FOX | Stream: Fubo (try for free)
  • Odds: Austria +500; Draw +350; France -200

Group D

One of this Euro's most attractive groups features two powerhouses of European soccer in France and Netherlands. Two of world soccer's leading talent producers have been vying for top-five status in the UEFA coefficient for the past few years with Ligue 1 pulling clear of the Eredivisie this past season. The French and the Dutch face two tricky sides, though, with Ralf Rangnick's Austria and a Poland side with a few quality pieces despite their general inability to translate that appearance on paper into on-field results. Almost everyone will expect Les Bleus and Oranje to advance as the top two here, but which potential order is yet to be decided and both will know that they cannot afford to slip up against either the Austrians nor the Poles before facing each other in the second round of games.

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Team news

Austria: With the exception of Germany-based pair Stefan Lainer -- who misses out despite his 39 caps -- and Xaver Schlager with his 43, Rangnick has sprung few surprises in his selections for the tournament roster. David Alaba is a huge miss but the Real Madrid man remains far from full fitness so that was expected. Otherwise, seven squad members ply their trade in Austria domestically and experienced key men Marko Arnautovic and Marcel Sabitzer are present with the Borussia Dortmund man skipper.

Possible Austria XI: Lindner; Lienhart, Daniliuc, Trauner, Mwene; Seiwald, Laimer; Baumgartner, Kainz, Schmidt; Gregoritsch.

France: With only one enforced injury-related absence in Lucas Hernandez, Deschamps has had pretty much an unimpeded selection process which has seen N'Golo Kante make a surprise return. This is the last call for Olivier Giroud who will retire after the tournament while Antoine Greizmann is the second most experienced player in this group. Mbappe is now captain and will return to the starting XI after being rested for the majority of the Canada draw but his rustiness could be a point of concern for Deschamps. This is Mike Maignan's first tournament as the undisputed No. 1 while William Saliba will hope to start the tournament and make himself a fixture with Les Bleus.

Possible France XI: Maignan; Kounde, Upamecano, Saliba, Hernandez; Camavinga, Rabiot; Dembele, Griezmann, Mbappe; Giroud.


Although a narrow one-goal win would not be surprising, France should have too much for Austria and will likely get the job done fairly comfortably. Expect Mbappe to hit the ground running with a goal or two as the French start as they mean to go on. Pick: Austria 0, France 2.

Catch up on all the Euro 2024 action

Day 1 results with Germany kicking off
Day 2 results as Spain cruise
Day 3 results with England's slow start

More Euro 2024 reading