The All Blacks kick off their European tour against France hoping to brush aside their upset loss to the Wallabies three weeks ago. Catch all the live scores, highlights and action on The Roar from 6:45am (AEDT).
Despite bringing home the Rugby Championship and Bledisloe Cup for another year, New Zealand find themselves in somewhat of a rare situation for them.
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Coming into a Test match off the back of a loss.
The All Blacks went down 23-18 in Brisbane three weeks ago, in what was just their third loss from their last 33 games.
In better news for the All Blacks though, they’re coming up against a French side who have been deflated by a horror June series in South Africa and off-field pressure on coach Guy Noves and the French Rugby Federation.
Les Bleus were rolled by the Springboks away from home, losing all three Tests by 23, 22 and 23 points respectively.
It was a disappointing trip to the Southern Hemisphere for the French having finished equal second in the Six Nations tournament earlier in the year.
If the odds weren’t against them already, France will head into the game knowing that it’s been eight years since they last beat the All Blacks and are on a 10-game losing streak against the world champions.
It’s also been 17 years since they beat New Zealand in France, 44 years since they beat them in Paris, and they’ve never beaten them at Stade de France.
France will have their fourth Test match of the year against South Africa to look forward to after this.
For New Zealand, they have Scotland to look forward to.
French coach Noves has made a few interesting choices for his line up, picking four uncapped players to make their debut in the starting side.
Toulon fly-half Anthony Belleau has been called in for his first Test, replacing the injured Camille Lopez who is gone for five months with a leg injury.
Outside centre Geoffrey Doumayrou, lock Paul Gabrillagues and flanker Judicael Cancoriet are the other three names to make their international debut today.
Halfback Antoine Dupont is just 20 years old and will get his first starting spot having debuted off the bench against the Springboks back in June.
Mathieu Bastareaud also comes into the side having not played for the French side since the 2015 World Cup.
For the All Blacks, coach Steve Hansen will welcome back star five-eighth Beauden Barrett who returns to the side after missing the last Test against the Wallabies.
Vaea Fifita gets his chance to shine starting in the scrum thanks to the absence of Jerome Kaino who has been sent back to New Zealand with a knee injury.
Liam Squire won’t be lining up in black either due to illness.
Rieko Ioane returns to the line-up after recovering from a dislocated finger.
It’s hard to see the All Blacks losing this one.
They’ll be fired up after the loss in Brisbane and they’re coming up against a side in disarray at the moment. France will hopefully put up a better fight than they did against the Boks, but unfortunately for them, they have to do it against the best in the world.
New Zealand to win by 28