Euro 2012 Betting Preview – Czech Republic v Poland

June 16th, 2012 | Posted by in Euro 2012

Below we have previews of the 2nd week of Euro 2012 where some important games will be played to see who will progress to the next round thanks to our friends at Sportingbet Australia. This Preview by GMorgan for the game Czech Republic v Poland.
Check out all the Euro 2012 betting odds from a number of European, Australian and International online sports books.

Group A

Czech Republic v Poland – Municipal Stadium, Wroclaw – Saturday 16th June 2012
Czech Republic vs Poland – betting odds

Group A may have looked like a yawn-fest waiting to happen before the tournament got underway, but it has in fact proved to be hugely entertaining and Saturday’s clash between Czech Republic and Poland promises to take the excitement and drama to another level.

Victory for either side would secure them a place in the Quarter-Finals, while the Czechs could also qualify with a draw as long as Greece do not dish out a real hiding to group leaders Russia when they meet in Warsaw.

And it’s not easy to predict who will be preparing for the last eight and who will be heading for the holiday sun loungers given that both sides have thrilled and disappointed in equal measure in the two games they have played thus far.

The Poles were superb in the first half-hour of their opening game against Greece, but subsequently went off the boil completely and failed to secure a victory that was there for the taking.

They then made a painfully sluggish start against Russia and could have been out of the contest by the break, only to rally in the second-half and come very close to snatching all three points.

The Czechs, meanwhile, were run ragged by a rampant Russia in their first game of the tournament, but came flying out of the blocks against Greece and despite fading badly after the break, still managed to bag the three points that kept their qualification hopes alive.

So it’s crunch time in Wroclaw and with the passionate and vocal home supporters behind them, Franciszek Smuda’s men are likely to be installed as warm favourites to get over the line.

They will have noted how Russia took the Czechs apart out wide, especially down the left and although they reshuffled their rearguard for the Greece game, Michal Bilek’s side still looked decidedly vulnerable. Their cause was not helped by another disastrous performance from Petr Cech who compounded his woeful display against the Russians by gifting the Greeks their goal and in doing so, confirmed the fears of those of us who feel that the Chelseaman’s best days are behind him.

The Poles will need to  press high up the pitch as they did in the second-half against Russia in order to try and stifle Tomas Rosicky who remains the Czechs’ creator-in-chief, while their full-backs will require some assistance from their midfielders in shackling widemen Petr Jiracek and Vaclav Pilar, both of whom featured prominently against Greece.

In terms of their own strengths, the co-hosts have looked very threatening going forward in both of their games thus far, although they will be a touch disappointed that they have only managed to convert two of the host of chances that they have created. At times, star striker Robert Lewandowski has been too isolated a figure and with a victory on Saturday essential, the onus will be on skipper Jakub Blaszczykowski, Ludovic Obraniak and Eugen Polanski to get alongside and even beyond the Borussia Dortmund man in order to exploit the Czechs’ flimsy defence.

As far as his team selection goes, Smuda does not appear to have any fresh injury concerns to contend with, although he does have to decide whether to retain Przemyslaw Tyton in goal or recall Wojciech Szczesny who will be available having served his suspension.

The Czechs, meanwhile, will have taken plenty of positives from the attacking promise they showed in the win over Greece, but will also be conscious of the need to tighten up considerably at the back.

While full-backs Theodor Gebre Selassie and David Limbersky look great going forward, they appear far less composed when asked to carry out their bread-and-butter defensive duties and although Michal Kadlec appeared more comfortable in the middle than he did at left-back against Russia, his partner, Tomas Sivok, is still struggling for form.

On a more positive note, Tomas Hubschman played a key role in the win over Greece, with his presence in central midfield allowing Jiracek and Pilar the freedom to weave their magic down the flanks and if Milan Baros can find his shooting boots, the Polish defence could face a real test inWroclaw.

Of the last five meetings between the two countries, the Poles have won three to the Czechs’ two, but it’s fair to say that none of those clashes have had anywhere near as much riding on them as this one.

With little to choose between the two sides, it promises to be tense, tight and probably a little tetchy and the co-hosts should just edge it to qualify alongside Russia.

Prediction: Czech Republic 1-2 Poland

 

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