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France vs Wales: Six Nations 2023 – LIVE!


France vs Wales: Six Nations 2023 – LIVE!

Six Nations Super Saturday continues in Paris this afternoon as Les Bleus hope to keep their title hopes alive. The defending champions must win handsomely at the Stade de France and then hope for a huge favour from old rivals England in Dublin later to destroy Ireland’s Grand Slam dreams and pip the world’s top-ranked team at the last. Unlikely yes, but stranger things have happened.

France should hold up their end of the bargain as they return to home soil today, fresh from a seven-try, 43-point rout at Twickenham last weekend that was England’s heaviest-ever home defeat. Confidence will now be back to soaring levels in Fabien Galthie’s camp after their first Six Nations win on English territory since 2005, just what they needed with the small matter of a home Rugby World Cup looming in the autumn.

Warren Gatland’s Welsh side have endured a dismal tournament for the most part against a backdrop of an ongoing domestic crisis in the sport, though should at least avoid the wooden spoon after that much-needed bonus-point win in Rome last weekend. Follow France vs Wales in the Six Nations live below!

Live updates


Scotland earn bonus-point win over Italy

It’s all over in the first game of Super Saturday at Murrayfield!

Scotland have claimed a bonus-point win over Italy, 26-14, thanks to a last-gasp hat-trick try from Finn Russell’s replacement, Blair Kinghorn.

The Azzurri had pulled it back to five points late on and were camped on the Scottish line to make Gregor Townsend sweat, but could not drive home their advantage and end the 2023 Six Nations winless.

They collect the wooden spoon for the 18th time and eighth year in a row, despite some impressive progress and performances.

Wales do not have to worry about picking up that wooden spoon for the first time since 2003.

Scotland, meanwhile, are likely to finish in third place after a very encouraging competition.

Getty Images

Warren Gatland looking very dapper as he surveys the pre-match scene at the Stade de France, deep in conversation with forwards coach Jonathan Humphreys.

Just 25 minutes remaining until kick-off in Paris.

Getty Images

Galthie demands even more from France

Incredibly, Monsieur Galthie does not believe that France were at their best against England at Twickenham, despite running in seven tries during a one-sided, 43-point beatdown that was their old rivals’ biggest-ever defeat on home soil and third-largest anywhere in the world.

“The Twickenham match gave us a lot of satisfaction, we can’t hide that,” he said.

“But we also saw some room for improvement. We could have played better with the ball and without the ball, done better in our transitional play.”

Action Images via Reuters

Galthie warns against underestimating Wales

France coach Fabien Galthie, in tears after emphatically ending that long Twickenham hoodoo last weekend, has warned of the perils of underestimating a Welsh team that can still pose a threat to their slim title hopes despite a disappointing tournament to date.

“Two years ago, this Wales side was two minutes away from winning the Grand Slam in our stadium,” he said.

“Two seasons isn’t a long time ago and there are players in that side who won three Grand Slams and five (Six Nations) tournaments.

“Whatever happens, the Welsh always put their bodies on the line. They give everything, everything, everything.

“For a long time, they tormented the France team.”


France blitz of England ‘one of the best performances’

Wales won eight out of nine matches against France between 2012-19, including that dramatic World Cup quarter-final in Oita.

However, the tide has well and truly turned since then, with France having won four in a row against today’s opponents including a gruelling 13-9 victory in Cardiff 12 months ago.

Gatland lavished praise on Les Bleus after their record drubbing of England and urged his side to start well in Paris and stand up to the physicality and pressure kicking game.

“I think France last weekend put in probably one of the best performances seen in a long, long time,” he said.

“They are the number two team in the world, they bring a really physical approach to the way they play and they have tended to start well.


“We’ve got to go out there and start well, make sure we are in that arm-wrestle with them and give ourselves that opportunity.

“They are a team that kick the ball a lot, so we’ve also got to make sure that our back-field is right and we have got to be good in the air.”


Gatland hails ‘incredible sevant” Faletau before 100th cap

Warren Gatland was also full of praise for Taulupe Faletau as he prepares for his 100th cap this afternoon.

Given the level that the 32-year-old Cardiff number eight still operates at, he surely won’t be one of the experienced holdovers from Wales’ golden generation set for the boot after the Six Nations.

“He has been an incredible servant to Wales,” Gatland said.

“I remember in the early years he was just a constant and he became absolutely world-class in terms of his performances.

“There are a lot of things that people don’t see in terms of his ability to read the game – he will run support lines that people don’t see.

“He has been brilliant for the Lions as well and it is a great accolade for him and his family.”


Gatland: Up to eight Wales players set for final Six Nations game

One of Wales’ chief problems among many at this tournament seems to have been something of a lost generation, with a lot of players either coming to the end of their international careers or just beginning them – with very little in between.

Just under half of today’s matchday squad are over 30 and a post-tournament cull seems to be on the way ahead of the World Cup in the autumn.

Warren Gatland admitted on Thursday that today could be a last Six Nations outing for up to eight of his senior players.

“If I look at the squad, going through it, there are up to eight players in there who are potentially playing their last Six Nations game,” he said.

“We’ve got to think about building for the World Cup this year, but also thinking about 2027 (World Cup). You need to bring in some younger players and give them that time to develop.

“The ideal scenario is you want to go to a World Cup with a squad of mid to late 20s with 40 or 50 caps.


“That is some of the thinking behind the selection behind guys who have been great servants to Welsh rugby, but are probably involved in their last Six Nations game.

“The message to them who might be playing their last Six Nations game is enjoy the occasion and the moment. For a lot of them, it might be the last time they do that.”


Ireland title permutations

And per the same source, here’s how Ireland can make sure they are celebrating come around 7pm in Dublin this evening.

How Ireland can win the Six Nations title

  • They beat England – also a Grand Slam: 26 or 27 points
  • They draw with England: 21 points
  • They lose to England but pick up two bonus points: 21 points
  • They lose to England picking up one bonus point and stay ahead of France on points difference: 20 points
  • They lose to England picking up no bonus point but France win without a bonus point (and do not close the points difference gap) or fail to win

France title permutations

Per the official Six Nations website, here is how France can pull off a sensational last-gasp title heist this afternoon.

How France can win the Six Nations title

  • They beat Wales with a bonus point and Ireland lose without a bonus point: 20 points to 19
  • They beat Wales with a bonus point and Ireland lose with a bonus point but France close the gap in points difference: 20 v 20
  • They beat Wales without a bonus point and Ireland lose without a bonus point and France close the gap in points difference: 19 v 19

Six more Wales changes from Gatland

Warren Gatland has chopped and changed his side considerably for every match in this Six Nations so far, and today is no exception.

There are six more alterations to his starting XV, with the fit-again Dan Biggar back at fly-half in place of Owen Williams and a new centre partnership of George North and Nick Tompkins named as Joe Hawkins and Mason Grady drop out.

Louis-Rees Zammit is also in at full-back with Liam Williams sidelined.

In the pack, veteran warhorse Alun Wyn Jones is recalled at lock in place of Dafydd Jenkins and Aaron Wainright makes his first appearance of the tournament in the back row with Jac Morgan suffering an ankle injury.

Taulupe Faletau is handed his 100th cap at number eight, while Leigh Halfpenny is back on the bench after injury.

Rhys Webb shone on his first Six Nations start since 2017 against Italy last weekend and keeps his place at scrum-half ahead of Tomos Williams.


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