Sweden vs Poland
Robert Lewandowski is dealing with one other early exit from a significant worldwide soccer event.
Except, that’s, Poland can discover a well past one of many tightest defenses on the European Championship.
Beating Sweden is Poland’s solely path to the knockout stage of Euro 2020 — and that’s one thing no crew has managed in seven video games in 2021.
The place there’s Lewandowski, although, there’s hope for Poland.
FIFA’s reigning participant of the 12 months recovered from an underwhelming show in Poland’s 2-1 loss to Slovakia in Group E by scoring the equalizer in a 1-1 draw with Spain to successfully maintain his crew in competition on the event.
It was a traditional striker’s end, too, utilizing his power to carry off his marker, Aymeric Laporte, and directing a header from a cross into the underside nook for his 67th worldwide objective.
Lewandowski needed to feed off scraps in opposition to Spain and the identical could possibly be the case in opposition to Sweden, an ultra-pragmatic crew whose attacking ambitions is likely to be much more restricted than regular at Saint Petersburg Stadium on Wednesday.
Sweden has 4 factors from its opening two video games in Group E — a 0-0 draw in opposition to Spain and a 1-0 win over Slovakia — and was assured of qualifying for the spherical of 16 due to the outcomes of Monday’s video games.
A win would safe a primary place within the group. Then once more, so may a draw.
Sweden is considered one of three groups but to concede a objective at Euro 2020, together with Italy and England. Provided that stat, and the crew’s inclination to defend compactly and in numbers particularly when it doesn’t have to assault, it explains why Poland is dealing with such a tricky job.
Lewandowski has solely superior from the group stage as soon as in three appearances at both a World Cup or a European Championship with Poland. That was at Euro 2016, the primary time the continental event had been expanded to 24 groups.
Whereas 67 targets in 121 video games for Poland is a superb file, the Bayern Munich striker is commonly starved of high quality service at main tournaments when the usual of opposition will increase. He has solely three targets in 13 video games at a World Cup or European Championship.
Poland, which is in final place within the group with one level, could possibly be with out defender Jan Bednarek and midfielder Jakub Moder due to damage. They are going to endure health assessments on the day of the sport.
Andersson could determine to alter his lineup now that qualification is assured, and provides some recreation time to fringe gamers.
Ending first stays necessary to Andersson, although, as a result of that may imply further relaxation earlier than a last-16 recreation in Glasgow.
Dejan Kulusevski might return for Sweden after being left on the bench in opposition to Slovakia. The winger had simply returned to full coaching after finishing a interval of self-isolation after contracting the coronavirus.
Slovakia vs Spain
Spain could summon its most skilled participant for its most necessary match on the European Championship.
Sergio Busquets is about to return for the match in opposition to Slovakia on Wednesday, when “La Roja” faces the potential for an embarrassing elimination in entrance of its followers.
Solely victory for Spain will probably be sufficient to make sure a spot within the spherical of 16 at Euro 2020. A draw could also be sufficient, however provided that Poland doesn’t defeat Sweden within the different Group E match. Each video games will probably be performed on the similar time.
The 32-year-old Busquets, the one participant left from Spain’s World Cup-winning squad in 2010, didn’t play within the crew’s first two matches after testing constructive for the coronavirus. The Barcelona midfielder had to enter isolation and solely rejoined the squad on Friday. He didn’t costume for the sport in opposition to Poland on Saturday.
Spain coach Luis Enrique didn’t need to danger taking part in with Busquets within the second match however stated he will probably be accessible on Saturday together with the remainder of his teammates.
Rodri Hernández performed in Busquets’ place within the first two matches, a 0-0 draw in opposition to Sweden and a 1-1 draw in opposition to Poland.
Slovakia coach Stefan Tarkovic stated Busquets’ return will probably be an enormous increase for Spain.
Azpilicueta himself could also be one other veteran known as upon to assist the Spanish squad because it faces elimination. The 31-year-old Chelsea proper again has but to play at Euro 2020 as Luis Enrique most well-liked to make use of Marcos Llorente within the place.
Jordi Alba had taken over as captain within the absence of Busquets. The nationwide crew’s longtime captain, Sergio Ramos, was not known as up after taking part in sparingly within the ultimate a part of the season with Actual Madrid due to accidents. The choice to depart him out of the squad though he would have been match to play by the point Euro 2020 began drew numerous criticism in opposition to Luis Enrique, with many saying the crew was left with no true chief.
Spain, taking part in all of its group matches in Seville, is 2 factors behind chief Sweden and one behind Slovakia, which shocked with a gap 2-1 win over last-place Poland earlier than dropping to Sweden 1-0.
Slovakia wants a draw to ensure its spot within the subsequent spherical. It’s making its second consecutive look after debuting at Euro 2016. Each Slovakia and Spain have been eradicated within the spherical of 16 in 2016. Spain final missed the knockout spherical in 2004.
Slovakia hopes to stun Spain once more prefer it did in 2014 by ending “La Roja’s” 36-match unbeaten run in qualifying for a European Championship or a World Cup.
It stays unclear what sort of help Spain will obtain from its followers at La Cartuja Stadium after a video of gamers ignoring followers on the crew resort final weekend was broadly shared on-line. The group remained supportive when the crew arrived on the resort on Tuesday, when gamers have been always waving as they handed by.
There may be additionally uncertainty in regards to the area circumstances at La Cartuja, which prompted complaints by some gamers after the primary two matches.
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