European Championship runners-up France face Asian champions Australia in the Group C opener of Fifa World Cup 2018 at the Kazan Arena on Saturday, June 16.
When is the match and how to watch it live in India
The first match of Saturday will start at 1 pm local time, 3:30 pm IST and 11 am BST.
Sony ESPN, Sony Ten 2 and Sony Ten 3 will provide live television coverage of the match in India. The live stream will be available on Sony Liv.
France vs Australia - Preview
While the quokka seems to have made an optimistic choice, the Socceroos will face scraping out of the group stages an uphill task. Bert van Mjiwk's side will start their campaign in Kazan with a stern test against tournament favourites France.
Australia are featuring in their fourth successive World Cup finals after being made to work hard in the qualifying tournament. The 36th-ranked side cannot afford a heavy defeat if they are to avoid an early exit in Russia.
Van Mjiwk's side are heading into the tournament opener on the back of two successive wins against Czech Republic and Hungary but their defence was shaky in the final pre-World Cup warm-up on the road.
The Dutch tactician has insisted on the need for luck and also said urged his players to believe in themselves to give themselves a chance against the might French outfit.
"That's important. When you're well organised and you believe in something and everybody knows exactly from each other what to do and you have the guts to play and be yourself, then we have a chance," Mjiwk told reporters on the eve of the match.
Can France make a strong start? (Team News)
On the other hand, Didier Deschamps' men need to make a solid start in order to lay down an early marker. With a young squad that is filled with world-class options, the Les Bleus have the firepower to go the distance in Russia.
Their attacking unit, consisting the likes of Antoine Griezmann, Kylian Mbappe and Ousmane Dembele, is one of the best going around. All eyes will be on the trio as France are expected to breeze through to the knock-out stages.
France though have been slow starters at the World Cup in the recent past, winning only one of their last four tournament openers. After being held to a 1-1 draw by the United States in their final warm-up game, Deschamps side will be under a bit of pressure to start well in Russia.
Did you know? Stats in the lead-up to France vs Australia
The present French team is the most valued team according to the transfer market. The staggering figure is € 972.45 million. Spain and Brazil take second and third spot respectively.
France has won just three of their last 12 World Cup group stage matches. They will definitely rely on their young talent to improve this record.
Australia's Tim Cahill has been a prolific player for the Socceroos, he has scored 45% of the goals that the team has managed to net in World Cup.
Australia's Daniel Arzani is the youngest at 2018 World Cup Russia, he is just 19 years and 152 days. The second youngest player on the list is the French forward, Kylian Mbappe, who is just 15 days older than Arzani. Fans would expect power packed performances from these teenagers.
Fifa World Cup 2018 - Global TV listings and live stream
- Australia: TV: SBS; Live stream: SBS, Optus Sport
- UK: ITV1.
- USA: Fox and Telemundo.
- Russia: VGTRK.
- Middle East: Bein Sports.