- France and Switzerland face off on Sunday with the winner topping Group A.
- France winger Coman versus Switzerland full-back Rodriguez could prove a key battle.
- Coman’s Bayern beat Rodriguez’s Wolfsburg three times out of three in 2015/16.
Kingsley Coman and Ricardo Rodriguez go head-to-head at UEFA EURO 2016 on Sunday when France take on Switzerland in Lille. Will the FC Bayern München winger or the VfL Wolfsburg left-back prevail? bundesliga.com takes a closer look…
With Coman’s France career only seven months old, the pair have yet to meet on the international stage, but their club encounters in 2015/16 might shed some light on what to expect at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy.
Wolfsburg finished as runners up to FC Bayern in 2014/15 but the gap between the two was bigger last term. The sides faced off three times in 2015/16 as the Bavarians romped to a Bundesliga and DFB Cup double, scoring ten goals to Wolfsburg’s two in those encounters. Coman was an unused substitute in the record-breaking, Robert Lewandowski-fuelled 5-1 rout on Matchday 6, but his positive showing in the 3-1 win in Round 2 of the DFB Cup was a portent of things to come in the league’s reverse fixture on Matchday 23.
After more than an hour of deadlock at the Volkswagen Arena, Coman opened the scoring after Rodriguez had been sucked towards his own penalty spot to cover his central defenders. One break of the ball later and Coman had volleyed home his fourth goal of the campaign. The prodigiously talented then-teenager added insult to injury less than ten minutes later, leaving Rodriguez for dust before spinning a delivery into the box which Franck Ribery helped on for Lewandowski to convert, completing a 2-0 win.
Rodriguez has significant international pedigree, having averaged five tackles and 2.5 interceptions per game in Switzerland’s run to the last 16 at the 2014 FIFA World Cup. However, France edged the Swiss in Group E in Brazil, and with Coman in the form of his life and enjoying an Indian sign over Rodriguez of late, perhaps he can help his country tame this particular wolf once again.