Ukraine vs. France, 2014 World Cup qualifying: Preview and TV schedule

Julian Finney

France will attempt to avoid missing their first World Cup in nearly 20 years as their playoff tie against the Ukraine begins on Friday in Kiev.

If Didier Deschamps and his French team want to erase some of the bad memories from 2010, France must defeat Ukraine in their playoff tie. Since winning the cup in 2008, trips to the World Cup have been tumultuous events for the French team, but failure in their playoff against the Ukraine would drop France from the World Cup for the first time since 1994.

Head coach Deschamps was a part of the French team that missed out in 1994 after losing their final two qualifying matches against Israel and Bulgaria.

For Ukraine, the playoff round has been the bane of their World Cup hopes in recent years. Since their quarterfinal finish in 2006, Ukraine have failed to qualify for the finals, falling in the playoff round ahead of the 1998, 2002 and 2010 World Cups.

Neither team has any major injury concerns ahead of Friday's first leg in Kiev.

Match Date/Time: 9:45 p.m. local, 2:45 p.m. ET

Venue: Kiev Olympic Stadium, Kiev, Ukraine

TV: Sportsnet (Canada), TF1 (France)

Online: ESPN3/WatchESPN (U.S.), Sportnet World Online (Canada)

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