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Ukraine v Sweden Euro 2012 Preview & Tips
Co-hosts Ukraine is matched up against Sweden for this Euro 2012 Group D game on June 11. The game starts at 19:45 GMT.
After beating Estonia 4-0, Ukraine succumbed to two straight friendly losses against Austria and Turkey last week. The losses weren’t taken lightly by Ukraine fans; Austria and Turkey both failed to qualify for Euro 2012, so logically, losing to both teams can only get worse when they face the likes of Sweden, France, and England in Group D. One doesn’t have to be superstitious to see a sour omen for Ukraine in here somewhere.
Ukraine has a fully fit squad to play against Sweden this 11th. Veterans Andrey Voronin and Andrey Shevchenko are joined by Artem Milevsky and Marko Devic in attack, and they will be supported by pacey flankers such as Yarmolenko and Konoplyanka. There’s a multitude of possibilities for Ukraine in attack, and this should be their best weapon against the Swedes in this match.
The Swedes have a knack for thrill as in their two preparatory games for Euro 2012, big score-lines and narrow leads prevailed. Winning against Iceland 3-2 but conceding a late 90th goal, Erik Hamren won’t be as happy as to how his defense gave a goal when the game was already in the bag. In the following 2-1 win against Serbia, the opposite happened as they conceded in the 27th minute. They were lucky enough to win a penalty that Ibra safely tucked away, but Hamren wouldn’t really like the fact that his team just can’t put up a convincing defensive performance.
Sweden will have to be wary of the threats Ukraine can provide them in this game. Olsson and left back and Lustig on the other side will definitely have a busy night fending of waves of Ukrainian attacks from the flanks. Both are experienced enough to handle the wit and pace of a young Ukraine wing-personnel, but in this case mental focus takes more precedence than experience so they will have to focus on their job for a full 90 minutes.
Ukraine v Sweden Betting Preview
This game is crucial for both teams as they will be up against the group’s heavyweights in France and England after this. Sweden is of course seen to have the advantage on paper, but not much tactically; both teams look like they can cancel each other out with respective strengths and weaknesses all over the field. Ukraine may put up a stern fight here in front of their crowd, but as to how much of a fight they can put up we can’t say yet. All we know is that logic leads us to the prospect of counting on the home team when everything says a tie is about to happen.
Verdict: A close Ukraine win, 2-1.
Tip: Ukraine is at 2.50 to win, 9.50 to win 2-1. While we project this game to go over 2.5 goals at 2.35, a ‘game to go under 2.5 goals’ is also probable at 1.57. Zlatan Ibrahimovic is at 2.87 to score anytime, but in this match, we fancy Andriy Yarmolenko to break the ice with a breakout performance. He is at 3.10 to score anytime.
All odds are from Bet365.com (£200 FREE BET!).