Italy are the ever improving side in the six nations and under new coach Jaques Brunel they are playing a more expansive game and are becoming much more of a threat in this competition.
Italy go into this match full of confidence after giving some very impressive performances in the autumn internationals where they lost 22-19 to Australia and could have won the game in the dying minutes.
Finishing with the wooden spoon in six of the last nine competitions and winning only one game in each of the last three years means you won't be wanting to put money on them beating France. But it's going to be closer than any other year and it is not a done deal.
France have a series of injury problems with particularly winger Le Clerc being the most sorely missed whilst Italy have only one debutant in Francesco Minto who made his international debut against the All Blacks in November.
Last year I backed Italy to beat Scotland and that was a handsome payday but this year punters are not so quick to dismiss Italy and at odds of 8/1 to win this game – well maybe it's still worth a punt if you really think France will be so disrupted.
Where there is true value though is in the draw.
Not many draws occur in rugby but with Italy playing at home and the French with injury problems you could do a lot worse than take the massive 40/1 on offer from Bet365 that this game ends in a draw. That's a mistake because they are offering the same odds for a draw in the England V Scotland game in which I give Scotland no chance at all.
I would not be putting that bet into an accumulator but if you have a spare fiver this weekend that is the bet it should go on.
Most bookies will give you 20/1 but: