After Germany's fright against an Algeria team playing well above their station, the World Cup second-favourites now come up against a French side that mean business.
Didier Deschamps' team have impressed during the tournament, making short work of their group opponents and eliminating Nigeria in the round of 16.
France will be hoping that the Germany that appeared in the previous round, against Algeria, are the team they turn up to face in the Maracana, as this will surely aid their chances of making the semi-finals.
Here is how you can watch this knockout game:
When: Friday, July 4, at 5 p.m. BST (12 p.m. ET)
Where: Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
TV: BBC HD (UK only); ESPN (U.S. only)
France Tactics and Formation
France were nowhere near the favourites in terms of the betting odds just a few weeks ago, but here they sit on the edge of a place in the last-four.
The French will start the game against Germany in their favoured 4-3-3 attacking line-up with Deschamps' biggest dilemma being who to pick as his striker.
On paper, the issue is not difficult. Karim Benzema has just spent a hot season in La Liga and is in great goalscoring form at the World Cup. Olivier Giroud of Arsenal started the previous knockout match against Nigeria in the centre-forward role and failed miserably.
It was strange watching Benzema work the left-hand side for France in the knowledge that he is as dangerous as any striker in the competition.
Benzema is likely to get the nod ahead of Giroud on this occasion and rightfully so. This will allow Antoine Griezmann to start from the left side after impressing during his substitute cameo against Nigeria.
Juventus starlet Paul Pogba will also feature again in a three-man midfield. He is really starting to look like the world-class talent everybody anticipates he will become, as he matures into the role of France's star player.
Dominic Fifield of The Guardian recently described Pogba as "the complete midfielder" as he eulogised about the 21-year-old former Manchester United talent.
Paul Pogba’s nickname has morphed since he arrived in Brazil. For most of his France team-mates he will still always be ‘La Pioche’, literally ‘The Pickaxe’ though, in this context, a kid selflessly going about his business to help the collective.
The locals, however, have been seduced by the blend of brute force and sinewy skill delivered in flashes by the youngster. They took one look at that eagerness to dribble, spray a pass or crunch a shot at goal, and awarded him their own moniker.
He will take to the field at the Maracana on Friday as ‘Pogiba’.
Indeed, Pogba will be central to any success that France have against Germany and further excellent displays could see his value increase to world-record levels.
If Pogba is at his swashbuckling best, France have every chance of progressing to a semi-final berth to face either Brazil or Colombia.
Germany Tactics and Formation
The wheels have come off the German machine but they have a very adept set of mechanics to put things right.
Joachim Low will match France's 4-3-3 with the same formation, relying on his brilliant midfield to see off their European challengers.
However, if their midfield performs as poorly as they did in their last outing they will be on the first plane back to Berlin. Oliver Holt of the Mirror agrees with this assessment and tips France to progress if the Germans cannot hit top gear:
Already looking forward to France-Germany in Maracana on Friday. If Germany do not play significantly better, France will be in the semis— Oliver Holt (@OllieHolt22) June 30, 2014
Germany are unlikely to make any significant changes to their starting tactics but could bring back in Sami Khedira after he impressed from the bench in the round of 16.
He is a player used to the big occasion and his Galactico status, and knowledge, could be utilised in the game as Germany look to control Benzema.
Will Germany regain their form and beat France?
Germany are very reliant on the skill and performances of Thomas Mueller, who has not let them down yet. But those around him must perform to the levels he has set and not swim in mediocrity as they have done recently.
But France may be the team with the extra motivation on Friday, as they look to prove pre-tournament odds wrong by taking out one of the favourites.