World Cup Preview: France v Samoa

Samoa travel to Perpignan to take on France in the final group game of the World Cup.

The winner will go through to a quarter-final clash against Fiji at Warrington next Sunday, while the loser will play England at Wigan on Saturday.

Both teams have won one game so far – France 9-8 and Samoa 38-4 both against Papua New Guinea, while both sides have also lost handsomely against New Zealand.

Salford-bound forward Tony Puletua goes straight in to Matt Parish’s 19-man squad having been drafted in to the fold following injuries to Frank Winterstein, Harrison Hansen and Rene Maitua, following approval from World Cup officials last week.

France will be looking to make the most of home advantage, according to back-rower Olivier Elima.

He said: “It is going to be fantastic to play such a big game in front of a home crowd. This game is a decider and we have a few more days’ rest than Samoa and the feeling in the camp is just really good.

“We feel like we need to go out there and show people what we can do. We need to do the things we have been doing in training and this is such an exciting game, I think it will bring it out in us.

“We have watched both of Samoa’s games and they are a very strong side. They are the kind of players who like to throw the ball about and you cannot rule them out until you have them on the floor tackled. We cannot let them run, they are a big side and we need to be at our best.”

France squad: Jean-Philippe Baile (Catalan), William Barthau (Catalan), Kane Bentley (Toulouse), Thomas Bosc (Catalan), Remi Casty (Catalan), Vincent Duport (Catalan), Olivier Elima (Catalan), Morgan Escare (Catalan), Jamal Fakir (Catalan), Benjamin Garcia (Catalan), Tony Gigot (Cronulla), Clint Greenshields (North Queensland), Kevin Larroyer (Catalan), Antoni Maria (Catalan), Gregory Mounis (Catalan), Eloi Pelissier (Catalan), Sebastian Raguin (St Esteve), Mickael Simon (Catalan), Frederic Vaccari (Catalan)

Samoa squad: Leeson Ah Mau (St George), David Faalogo (Newcastle), Pita Godinet (NZ Warriors), Tim Lafai (Canterbury), Joseph Leilua (Newcastle), Michael Sio (NZ Warriors), Penani Manumalealii (Cronulla), Mose Masoe (Penrith), Suaia Matagi (NZ Warriors), Anthony Milford (Canberra), Junior Moors (Melbourne), Ben Roberts (Parramatta), Junior Sa’u (Melbourne), Iosia Soliola (St Helens), Sauaso Sue (Wests), Mark Taufua (Cronulla), Daniel Vidot (St George), Anthony Winterstein (Brisbane), Tony Puletua (St Helens)

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