10/8/20 2:45 pm
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Slovakia is welcoming Ireland to Bratislava in the semifinals of the UEFA Euro Cup Qualification Playoffs.
Slovakia has bee hot and cold for a while now, and they have won only 1 of their last 6 games, and that was almost over a year ago. In their latest two games in the Nations League, Slovakia has lost 1 game, while 1 game ended in a draw, and Slovakia has scored 4 goals while conceding 2 goals in those 2 games. In their last match against Israel on the road, Slovakia has had only 35% of ball possession, 3 shots on goal, 2 corner kicks, 2 nig chances created, and 79% of the correct passes. Slovakia has started the game well, with a goal in the 14th minute. Slovakia was under immense pressure for the rest of the game, and they have conceded a goal in the 91st minute of the match. The final score was 1-1. Stetina is the only injured player for Slovakia at the moment. Bozenik and Hamsik have each scored 3 goals for Slovakia in the qualifications. Hamsik will not be playing in this game, while Bozenik is expected to be in the starting lineup. Slovakia is a solid team that is in a soft rebuild mode, and they have a few good players from Serie A in their roster. Slovakia has been struggling with consistency, but they will need to be at their highest level in these playoffs if they want to end up at the Euro Cup next year.
Ireland did well in the Euro Cup qualifications, but not good enough to get there without going through the playoffs. In this year's Nations League, Ireland has played 2 games, and they haven’t won any of those games while scoring only 1 goal and conceding 2 goals. In their latest match against Finland at home, Ireland has had 52% of ball possession, 4 shots on goal, 3 corner kicks, 3 big chances created, and high 88% of the correct passes. Despite being a slightly better team in this match, Ireland wasn’t able to score a goal against the weak Finnish defense, and Ireland ended up losing this match 0-1. Ireland has scored only 6 goals in the Euro Cup qualifications, and they were all scored by a different player. There are no reported injuries in Ireland as of right now, and there are no suspensions as well. Ireland is the team that will focus on the defense, and they do have a good defense, but when it comes down to the wire, Ireland is having tough time finishing games because they can’t score a goal. As I’ve said earlier, Ireland has scored only 6 goals in 8 games in the Euro Cup qualifications, and in the group with Georgia, Gibraltar, Denmark, and Switzerland, that is simply not good enough.
Four of five games these two teams played against each other ended in a draw, and I think this one will end that way as well. Both teams are struggling in the attacking end massively, while they both have a solid defense. I’m sticking with a draw here.