Sweden is promising a extra expansive strategy towards Slovakia on the European Championship. That received’t be troublesome.
In opposition to Spain in its Group E opener, the Swedes had solely 15 per cent possession — the bottom determine on file within the historical past of the match. By way of passes, It had 161 in comparison with Spain’s 917.
Sweden coach Janne Andersson will say the sport plan of hunkering down, defending deeply and compactly, after which trying to hit on the break labored.
In spite of everything, the ultimate rating was 0-0 — a passable consequence towards the crew thought to be the most effective within the group — and Sweden arguably created the most effective two probabilities of the sport, for strikers Alexander Isak and Marcus Berg.
“If there’s one thing that we’re among the many finest on the planet at, it’s accepting a sacrificial recreation,” Sweden midfielder Albin Ekdal mentioned.
That received’t be accepted Friday, although, once they play a much less possession-based opponent in Slovakia, a crew minimize from an analogous material to Sweden when it comes to defensive rigidity and ease of its strategy.
“Slovakia performs in a different way, (to Spain)” mentioned Kristoffer Olsson, Ekdal’s central-midfield associate, “and which means we have now a special recreation plan, which suggests we are able to reset ourselves.”
Certainly, it is perhaps Slovakia which is pleased to retreat and absorb strain on this event within the fourth match at Euro 2020 to be performed in St. Petersburg this match.
The Slovaks opened with an sudden 2-1 win over Poland and may solely want some extent from its remaining two group video games to advance.
That will preserve its 100 per cent file of reaching the knockout stage in each main match it has certified for since changing into an unbiased nation in 1993, after doing so on the World Cup in 2010 and at Euro 2016.
Getting that time will almost certainly be simpler towards Sweden than towards Spain in its group nearer.
Marek Hamsik may have a greater perception into Sweden than anybody on the Slovakia crew.
In an effort to get enjoying time forward of Euro 2020, Hamsik — Slovakia’s long-time star participant and a Napoli nice from 2007-19 — give up Chinese language membership Dalian and returned to European soccer with Swedish crew IFK Gothenburg in March.
He immediately grew to become probably the most high-profile participant within the Swedish league, and one of many largest ever signings in its historical past, even when he wound up enjoying solely six video games and scoring one objective.
At 33, Hamsik has his finest days behind him however he confirmed towards Poland his expertise remains to be a degree above most gamers together with his contact, consciousness and timing of the cross.
Whether or not he can play three video games in a 10-day span in group play is questionable, doubtlessly that means he’ll be on the bench in the beginning towards both Sweden on Friday or Spain on June 23.
Andersson should additionally determine whether or not to recall Juventus winger Dejan Kulusevski, who’s again coaching with the squad after spending time in isolation as a result of he contracted the coronavirus earlier than the match began.