Sweden and Slovakia will clash on Friday, June 18 at Gazprom Arena in Saint Petersburg for their second match of EURO 2020. Having won their last game against Poland, another win today will guarantee the Repre a promotion into the next round. However, as the only team in Group E with a win under their belt, Štefan Tarkovič’s side wouldn’t mind ending the day with a draw either.
Sweden vs Slovakia
When: Friday, June 18 – 16:00 MSK
Where: Gazprom Arena in Saint Petersburg, Russia
Weather: Sunny, 22°C
Referee: Daniel Siebert (GER)
A somewhat undeserved win against Poland puts Slovakia in an excellent position to advance into the EURO 2020 knockout stage, however, they still need to grab three more points to be sure about their future. Sweden will surely have something to say about that, having forced an excellent draw against Spain in Monday.
A win for the Swedes would put tie them with Slovakia at the top of the table. It will also put them in an excellent spot to advance into the last-16 if Spain slip against Poland.
Sweden Look Sturdy
Sweden earned us a nice payout on Monday when they kept Luis Enrique’s team at bay and forced a 0-0 stalemate. It was an excellent showing from the Blue and Yellow, who held on despite holding only 25% of the ball.
Numbers like that don’t surprise us as Spain are a very possession-heavy side, and it hardly means that the hosts were the better team – as the final score would suggest. Sweden even had their chances to get themselves in the lead, but Marcus Berg and Alexander Isak failed to convert them. Still, an excellent performance from the Swedes.
Last time out, Sweden were forced to defend themselves to grab a much-needed point. This time out, they can afford to be a bit more active in the attack. Although Slovakia aren’t as weak as Sweden’s opponents leading into the EURO 2020, it’s still hard to look past their victories against Kosovo (3-0), Estonia (1-0), Finland (2-0), and Armenia (3-1), granted the Swedes were heavy betting favorites in all of those bouts.
In regards to team news, Matthias Svanberg won’t be back in the team, while Dejan Kulusevski might feature, but is likely to sit out this game.
Slovakia Can Be Happy
Slovakia stunned Poland on Monday with a 2-1 victory. Although an excellent result for Slovakia and their chances to advance, they were a bit lucky to walk away with all three points.
Looking back, the first goal of the match was an own goal courtesy of Wojciech Szczesny. To make matters worse, Poland saw Gregorz Krychowiak get sent off in 62’, just 16 minutes after the Poles scored an equalizer.
With only 10 men on the pitch, the Poles suffered an inevitable goal in 69’, and that about sums up what has happened on the day. Slovakia won the match, but we wouldn’t say that they were the better team.
Prior to their victory against the Poles, Slovakia drew with Austria (0-0) and Bulgaria (0-0), won against Russia (2-1) and managed only a 2-2 draw against Malta as 1.20 favourites. Not exactly spectacular results by any means.
In regard to team news, Slovakia will miss Denis Vavro, who has tested positive for COVID-19.
Slovakia vs Sweden Betting Picks
Slovakia and Sweden last met in 2018, when they parted ways with a 1-1 draw. It marked their second draw across the last eight years (0-0 in 2013), with a commanding 6-0 victory from Sweden in 2017 sandwiched in between.
Although Slovakia can be a solid team, they can be a bit iffy at times, and their recent showings don’t inspire much confidence. They were decent against Poland, but we would argue that they didn’t deserve to win.
Prediction: Sweden -0.50 Asian Handicap – 1.95 at Betfair
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