Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Prediction: Slovakia vs Wales

Veselin Trajkovic in Free Soccer Predictions 9 Oct 2019

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Verdict: Away win

Best odds: 21/10

Bookmaker: bet365

Slovakia will welcome Wales to the Anton Malatinsky Stadium in Trnava for a game which will be the fifth of the Euro 2020 qualifications for the hosts, and fourth for the visitors. Group E, to which these teams belong, is very far from settled at this point.

Slovakia

The Slovaks have shown two faces since the start of the qualifying campaign. They’ve shown that they’re capable of playing very well and achieving a good result, and that they can also disappoint with a poor performance. Of the five games they’ve played so far, they won three and lost two. They beat Hungary at home before losing away to Wales, they destroyed Azerbaijan away before getting hammered at home by Croatia, and they managed to repeat the win over Hungary s month ago. It means they currently sit in second place with nine points to their name, one less than group leaders Croatia, the same as third-place Hungary, and three more than fourth-place Wales.

The Nations League didn’t go as planned for Slovakia and these qualifications are the only way they can reach the tournament next summer.

Team News

Manager Pavel Hapal will be without the services of defender Kristian Kostrna, who was forced to leave the squad on Monday through injury. However, that shouldn’t affect his plans too much, with Kostrna being mostly on the fringes of the team anyway.

Wales

Having been free in the opening round of the group, Wales have a game in hand over the rest of the pack. Currently in fourth place with six points in the bag, they started their campaign by winning this fixture in reverse by 1-0, when Slovakia came to the Cardiff City stadium in March, courtesy of an early strike from Daniel James who made his way from Leeds to Manchester United this summer. Since then, they’ve lost away to Croatia and Hungary, by 2-1 and 1-0, respectively, before beating Azerbaijan at home by 2-1.

This game is the perfect opportunity for the team led by former Manchester United winger Ryan Giggs to catch up with Slovakia, but they will need to produce a fine performance in order to beat the hosts in Trnava. Their performances so far since Giggs took over from Chris Coleman haven’t exactly been brilliant, and they will have to improve seriously for the remaing part of the campaign if they are to even hope to reach the Euro next year.

Team News

Giggs will have a strong selection of players available, with both Juventus midfielder Aaron Ramsey and Real Madrid winger Gareth Bale present in the squad. But while Ramsey settled his future as he made his way from Arsenal to the Serie A champions for free this summer, Bale was the object of heavy speculations this summer which all came to nothing, and he has now reportedly decided that he wants to leave Santiago Bernabeu as soon as possible. It will be interesting to see if he will be able to stay focused on his national team’s endeavors at the moment.

Conclusion

This will likely be an even game, with both sides having everything to play for. If the visitors keep their heads under the pressure of playing a hugely important game in a hostile atmosphere, they just might prove able to pull a good result out of the hat.

Verdict: Away win

Best odds: 21/10

Bookmaker: bet365

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Veselin Trajkovic


Vesko is a football writer that likes to observe the game for what it is, focusing on teams, players and their roles, formations, tactics, rather than stats. He follows the English Premier League closely, Liverpool FC in particular. His articles have been published on four different football blogs.

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