Brunel's side have collected the Giuseppe Garibaldi Trophy in two of the last three years but both victories came on home soil and they have not won in France in RBS 6 Nations history.
Last week's performance against two-time defending champions Wales gave rise to optimism however, after disappointing summer and autumn campaigns last year followed an impressive run in the Championship thanks to victories over Les Bleus and Ireland.
In their 23-15 defeat to Italy, 20-year-old centre Michele Campagnaro scored two tries and he keeps his place, as does fly-half Tommaso Allan, also 20.
Another 20-year-old, Angelo Esposito, drops to the bench in one of five changes made by Brunel, who has called Alberto De Marchi, Joshua Furno and Francesco Minto into the pack and Gonzalo Garcia into midfield.
And Brunel has called on his young charges to improve on their showing against Wales if they are to upset a France side, buoyed by their opening win over England.
"I expect our young players to play at a higher level than they have done before. Just as I trust them by giving them a role in the starting XV, they have to reward my trust with solid performances," he said.
"We gave an interesting performance against Wales and there's no reason why we cannot take another step forward against France.
"I'm hoping we can look to last year's win in Rome for inspiration and that we can play to our full potential. If we play as I know we can, we have every chance of beating France.
"We hope that on Sunday we can remain in the game as long as possible but we will need to play a perfect game.
"We have decided to keep the same group but to make some changes to the starting XV in order to create a little bit of competition within the group."
For France, Hugo Bonneval makes his debut on the wing in place of Maxime Medard while hooker Dimitri Szarzewski, who appeared off the bench on the first weekend, is handed a start with Benjamin Kayser dropping to the bench.
The final change to the starting XV sees Yoann Maestri start at lock alongside captain Pascal Pape with Alexandre Flanquart dropping out of the squad and Sebastien Vahaamahina earning a place on the bench.
And head coach Philippe Saint-Andre revealed that Bonneval's form for Stade Francais made his decision an easy one.
"It's a logical choice following his performances with Stade Francais and from what he has shown us for three weeks in training," said Saint-Andre.
"He has the pace, the capacity to win one-on-one encounters and we wanted to see him with us.
"We need to be able to choose from three high-quality wingers. During the November tests, Maxime played two games, as did Yoann Huget and Sofiane Guitoune.
"Once you have five forwards and three backs on the bench, Vahaamahina gets the nod ahead of Flanquart because he is more powerful and versatile. It's also a question of collective balance."