9/3/20 2:45 pm
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Ukraine is hosting Switzerland at Arena Lviv in round 1 in the UEFA Nations League.
Ukraine has won the top spot in the group in the Euro Cup qualifications, and deservedly so I might add. Ukraine has won 6 games while tying 2 games, and with a total of 20 points, 17 scored goals, and only 4 conceded goals, Ukraine has won the first place. In their last game against Serbia, Ukraine has had 48% of ball possession, 5 shots on goal, 5 corner kicks, 3 big chances created, and 85% of the correct passes. This match ended in a 2-2 draw. Ukraine is led by former Milan and Chelsea striker Andriy Shevchenko, and he is doing a fantastic job. Moraes, Yarmolenko, Konoplyanka, Marlos, and Zinchenko are just some of Ukraine’s players that will be at Shevchenko’s disposal for this game. Ukraine is constantly improving and qualifying for the Euro Cup is a huge success for them. Investing in the youth talent, making their clubs more competitive in Europe, and giving the chance to younger players is what made Ukraine a good team, and I hope they can keep it up. This group 4 in the Nations League is strong, but Ukraine can certainly score some goals and make lives tough for Germany and Spain.
Switzerland has qualified for the Euro Cup next year, but they were lucky to do so. Switzerland ended the qualifications in the first place with 17 points, 1 point above Denmark and 4 points above Ireland. Switzerland was lucky to be playing against Gibraltar in their last game of the qualifications because they needed a win, and Gibraltar is not exactly the pillar of strength in soccer. Switzerland has had 75% of ball possession in that game, 14 shots on goal, 5 corner kicks, 8 big chances created, and 92% of the correct passes. Switzerland has won this game 1-6. There are a few great players like Xhaka, Zuber, Vargas, and Akanji in Switzerland, but I don’t think that is enough to make an impact in the Euro Cup next year. Of course, there are some players like Shaqiri missing from the team for this game. In the midfield, I think Switzerland is solid, but they are missing attacking firepower, and that will cost them in the Nations League. Switzerland has had the same coach since 2014, Velimir Petkovic, and they have been constantly improving, but I think their 12th place in the FIFA Standings does not reflect their current status in their roster, and I think we can expect for Switzerland to drop a few spots on that table.
I think that Ukraine is the better team at the moment, and they are in better form, or at least they were before the pandemic. Ukraine is playing at home, and I see them winning this match.