After a dismissal performance against Belgium, the Russians will look to bounce back on Wednesday, June 16 and secure all three points against Finland. The pressure will be on for the hosts as they look for their first points of EURO 2020 in front of thousands of home fans, who will demand nothing less than a victory at Gazprom Arena.
Finland vs Russia
When: Wednesday, June 16 – 16:00 MSK
Where: Gazprom Arena in Saint Petersburg, Russia
Weather: Intermittent Clouds, 20°C
Referee: Danny Makkelie (NED)
After a disastrous performance against Belgium in their EURO 2020 opener, Russia will look to bounce back against Finland at Gazprom Arena. Having won this bout four times across their last five meetings – dating back to 1995 – Russia should feel confident they can secure all three points.
However, it was the Eagle-owls who walked away with all three points when they last clashed with Russia at the 2012 Olympics. Can they emulate that success on Wednesday, or will the home ground advantage and the pressure from the home fans tip this match in favour of the hosts?
To say that Stanislav Cherchesov’s men disappointed with their performance against Belgium on Saturday would be an understatement. Although a 0-3 result is bad enough, it could have easily been much higher had Belgium cared enough to keep on pushing.
Russia ended that match with 38% ball possession and shot the ball 1/5, which is precisely as bad as it may seem. After such a terrible display, the pressure is on the Selection to make their fans happy, but that might be easier said than done.
Their loss against the Red Devils marked Russia’s second defeat across their last four outings and their first home defeat since October 2020, when they fell against Sweden (1-2). Although a good record, it’s tough to find a solid argument in favour of the hosts for their second match of the tournament.
Home advantage definitely is one, but as seen so far at EURO 2020, playing at home hardly gave the home side any significant edge over the visitors.
Finland Could Guarantee Themselves a Promotion
The Eagle-owls enter their second match of EURO 2020 following an impressive 1-0 victory against Denmark. Their success, however, has been overshadowed by Christian Eriksen suffering a heart attack on the pitch.
The Dane is reportedly recovering well, however, it remains to be seen whether we will ever see him back on the pitch.
Despite that incident, Finland were the better team that day. What we were most impressed about was the Finnish backline which successfully defended against Denmark’s advances.
Denmark ended that match with 63% ball possession and an incredible 23 goal attempts. Not one of those 23 found the back of Finland’s net, which very impressive and more of an indication of how solid the Finns are rather than Denmark’s lack of offensive threat.
Having secured all three points on Saturday, Finland could guarantee themselves a spot in the knockout stage with a win today. Even a draw would be a solid result for Markku Kanerva’s men, so there’s a solid chance Finland will deploy the same playstyle as they had last weekend.
Finland vs Russia Betting Picks
If their game against Denmark tells us anything is that Finland are extremely tough to defeat, and while the Russians have proven to be the better team in their last couple of meetings, we still can’t get over how poorly Cherchesov’s men played against Belgium.
Russia might be priced as the favourites, but we like Finland better. They might not end up winning, but securing a point should be easily achievable for the resilient Scandinavians.
Prediction: Finland +1.00 Asian Handicap
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