Scotland vs France Prediction: Six Nations 2022 Week Three

Banner with the Scotland and France flags, for the Six Nations.
TournamentSix Nations
TimetableSaturday 26th of February at 14:15 GMT
PredictionScotland to Win
OddsScotland to Win @ 3.50
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Scotland to Win
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It's always a big game when it's Scotland vs France: the auld alliance goes out of the window, and once political allies become hardened sporting enemies. Murrayfield will be full of roaring fans as Scotland look to grab a second win at home. France, on the other hand, impressive in the competition so far with two big Ws on the board, will be looking to spoil that party. Week three of the 2022 Six Nations could really put a spotlight on whom will take home the ultimate title and whom will be left dreaming of glory in next year's competition. Let's take a look at a break-down of the key elements, going into this mighty encounter.

scotland-versus-france

Background on Scotland vs France

It's been over 100 years since the first Scotland vs France rugby battle, and a lot of hard-fought history has been made. Scotland were the first to draw blood against France, with an opening 27-0 victory, but looking at historical wins, there is a slightly different picture today. Take a look at the table below for the full results on all of the clashes.

Scotland WinsFrance WinsDraws
39563

There you have it! France are going to win, right? They certainly have the better long-term form, so it would be easy to assume we may see another repeat of history. That may be one way to see things, but it does not factor in recent performance. Since 2018, the two sides have also played for the Auld Alliance trophy - a commemorative prize in the honour of the fallen soldiers from Scotland and France in the Great War. In this series, Scotland are actually the dominating force, having claimed last year's title and three out of four possible wins. I think that shows that whilst France have traditionally gotten the better of their rivals, Scotland have come into their own in recent years and may be the ones to watch in this match.

Factors on Paper

There are lot of factors to consider when placing a prediction: where the match is held, recent form, and more. Let's look at what is going to affect the outcome of this year's Scotland vs France match.

The Advantage of Playing at Home

Playing in front of home fans can give a side a huge boost to their performance. I have seen many a side come through on defence of their five-metre line or score in the dying minutes of a game because of the support they have had from screaming and singing fans. There is nothing better to supercharge morale.

With that being said, it looks like Scotland are going to have all of the support in the world, playing at Murrayfield. The travelling French will certainly have their say on Saturday, but Scottish rugby fans are going to be a dominant voice in the 67,144-strong stadium.

Rankings

World rankings are an important official benchmark for how teams are performing in the international sphere. Rankings are not perfect, but they are constantly updated to give fans of the sport an inside look at the strength of teams. Let's have a look at current standings to see how Scotland and France are currently faring:

World RankingCountry
1South Africa
2New Zealand
3England
4France
5Ireland
6Australia
7Scotland
8Wales
9Argentina
10Japan

In an official capacity, it would seem that Scotland are going to be crushed by a stronger France outfit. Rankings have not been a reliable predictor of winners this tournament, however - especially considering Scotland's results. The Scottish managed, in their first two weeks, to lose against a supposedly stronger side and pull out a nail-biting win against a supposed superior. Normally, I would put a little stock into these rankings, but for Scotland vs France, I am not sure what weight they should be given; therefore, I am calling it even-steven on this point.

Recent Six Nations Results

With results in from week one and two, it seems prudent to look at Scotland's and France's performances in the Six Nations so far. Perhaps from looking at these, we can determine who has the upper hand, going into this clash.

Scotland

MatchScoreWinner
Scotland vs England20-17Scotland
Wales vs Scotland20-17Wales

France

MatchScoreWinner
France vs Italy37-10France
France vs Ireland30-24France

Analysis

France have beaten all competition so far, coolly grabbing two big wins in the opening weeks. They were favourites before the tournament; now they are proving why. That's not to say that Scotland should be written off at this stage, however. Their match against Wales was a close call, and a well-deserved win over England further shows why they are a force to be reckoned with. Based on these results, I would be slightly tempted to be swayed by the popular press at this point.

Head Coaches

It's the battle of the nationals in this week's clash, as home-grown Gregor Townsend leads Scotland to take on Frenchman, Fabien Galthié's France. They appear to value different managerial styles: the cool cucumber, Townsend versus the volcanic passion of Galthié. Both bring a wealth of experience and success to their respective sides, but which is more likely to deliver on the X factor needed to win the game? It's a close call - especially as both sets of fans would back their respective Head Coach to the hilt. If I had to pick one, however, I would have to go with Townsend.

Scotland vs France Winner: A Glint of Hope at Murrayfield?

I think this is going to be an extremely tough week, both for Scotland and France playing this match and for me in terms of picking a winner. The popular press are convinced that France are a shoo-in, but I am not so sure. The majority of people seem convinced the same would happen last year and the year before that, but Scotland keep proving time and time again that they are a team that laugh at the underdog label. Maybe I am thinking too much along that line of thinking, but I think you can forgive me for my gut instinct, given that Scotland managed an upset against England mere weeks ago. Scotland have a fantastic set-up, quality team, and a fire in their belly to defy popular conception. I think things are going to be close, but that Scotland are going to claw this one. I expect Flower of Scotland to be ringing out around Murrayfield at the final whistle.

Scotland to Win