FIFA has rejected France's appeal over the decision not to seed Les Bleus in the World Cup play-offs, according to reports.
Didier Deschamps' side finished second in Group I, three points behind winners Spain, following a 3-0 win over Finland on Tuesday night.
That saw them book a two-legged play-off next month and, given they are not seeded following a slide down the world rankings, it means they may well need to beat Portugal if they are to make next year's World Cup finals.
The other three seeds are Greece, Croatia and Ukraine but a Cristiano Ronaldo-led Portugal are clearly the team to avoid.
According to L'Equipe, FIFA were contacted by the French Football Federation regarding the seeding on the grounds that France had had to play in a group of five rather than six which would leave little margin for error.
However, FIFA told L'Equipe: "FIFA has been contacted by the French Football Federation about the rules of the competition on the terms of appointment of seeded for the draw of the European play-offs.
"However, no formal request was transmitted to us from the FFF.
"FIFA wishes to confirm that the [rules of the] preliminary stages at the FIFA World Cup Brazil 2014 cannot be changed during the competition."