Stade de France</span>
So it's crunch time for the French on Friday in St Denis, despite the abject performances from Eddie O'Sullivan's side in their opening two games in Bordeaux, it's Laporte and his side who face the most pressure going into this Pool D Clash.
Having failed in their opening game against the Pumas a loss against the Irish would see the French unceremoniously dumped out of the tournament making them the first host country who would have failed to make the quarter finals.
As for Ireland expectation levels seem to be back to where they were in the 1990s, rock bottom, no thanks to the last six test matches which have been in pale comparison to the performances of the Six Nations and Autumn Internationals. Can they turn it around in time for Friday, unlikely but stranger things have happened.
The French certainly have the momentum going into this game no doubt after they easily dispatched the Namibians last night with even Chabal getting in on the scoring, although suspect Namibian defence is putting it mildly to say the least.
Ireland will have to do without Rory Best who has been ruled out for 3 weeks with Jerry Flannery taking his place and Junkie Sheehan coming in on the bench, God help us all if Flannery gets injured. Doubts remain over Denis Hickie who is struggling with a bruised knee so Trimble or Murphy may get the call, ideally Murphy should get the nod as he'd be relishing the chance to make up for his defensive lapse when the sides met back in February.
Eddie O'Sullivan will name the side at lunchtime although I still expect minimum changes.
Regardless it promises to be an intriguing match to say the least.