France coach Raymond Domenech will be looking to promising youngsters Karim Benzema and Hatem Ben Arfa to help keep their Euro 2008 qualifying campaign on course against Lithuania.
With two games left, France are now involved in a fiercely-contested three-way battle with Scotland and Italy for the two qualifying places to next year’s finals.
France are third in Group B, two points behind leaders Scotland and a point off world champions Italy, and need to win both their remaining matches to be guaranteed a place in the finals.
However, with Nicolas Anelka missing the Lithuania game though injury, Domenech may turn to Lyon duo Ben Arfa and Benzema, aged 20 and 19 respectively.
Substitutes Benzema and Ben Arfa scored three of France’s four second-half goals in the 6-0 victory in Torshavn including two from Benzema after he had replaced the injured Anelka. Benzema has been particularly impressive this season, scoring three goals in five caps, and is Lyon’s leading league scorer this season with ten goals in as many games.
In the absence of Anelka Domenech has called up Monaco’s Frederic Piquionne but could opt to pair Benzema with Thierry Henry in a 4-4-2 formation.
Domenech believes the win over the Faroes has boosted the confidence of his team as they take on a Lithuania side with nothing but pride to play for.
“It was just another step. It will be mission accomplished when we take the nine points (after Faroe Islands, Lithuania and Ukraine),” he added.