Spain v Switzerland
Switzerland have never been relegated from League A but a loss here will see them edge closer to a possible season in League B. Switzerland are in terrible form, they lost their first 3 matches of this season’s Nations League and have only won 1 of their 5 matches. This win did come in their last match against Portugal, however they lost this match 2.86-0.41 on xG. Portugal had 19 shots in this match, Switzerland managed just 5. While they rode their luck in that match, it is very unlikely they will be that lucky again, so will need an improved performance if they are to beat Spain in this match.
Spain have been in great form and with Luis Enrique in charge they are going from strength to strength. Spain are unbeaten in 8 matches with their last loss coming to France and in home matches they are almost unbeatable, that loss to France being their only home loss in 22 matches! While Spain have injuries to several key players, they still have a very strong starting eleven available to them and with two uncapped strikers, Borja Iglesias and Nico Williams, in the squad to bolster their attack, they should have enough to win this match.
Scotland v Republic of Ireland
After an extremely impressive performance and result against Ukraine on Wednesday, Scotland will come into this game now full of belief that they can win this group and achieve promotion. Scotland limited Ukraine to just 3 shots, with not even one on target and their incredible home form continued, they have lost just 2 of their last 16 home matches. Scotland are missing several centre backs and also suffered an injury to Nathan Patterson in the Ukraine match, however the likes of Aaron Hickey and Jack Hendry who came into the team impressed. They face Ireland who only have one win so far, however, that was a 3-0 win in the reverse fixture vs Scotland. While this will provide hope to Ireland fans, it is looking increasingly likely that they will finish third in a Nations League group yet again and Scotland are likely to dominate again in Hampden Park.
Scotland have the physical ability to compete with Ireland aerially but the technical abilities of players such as John McGinn, Che Adams and Callum McGregor could be the deciding factor in this match where I expect Scotland to win.
Serbia v Sweden
Serbia are a team that are far better at home than away. Serbia have lost just one of their last 10 home games and have scored at least 3 in each of their victories and with talisman Aleksandar Mitrovic leading the line in great form, he will be fancying his chances of increasing his goal tally of 10 goals in 13 Nations League games. However, he is not the only Mitrovic for Serbian fans to be excited about, 20 year old Stefan Mitrovic has received his first call up to the squad and was described as the future of Serbian football by Serbia’s manager recently.
Sweden are not having a good Nations League campaign. After a win in the opening match, they have now lost their last 3 in a row and their poor away record will not give them much hope in this match either. Sweden have won just twice in their last 11 away matches and failed to score in five of those. There are also doubts of whether Newcastle forward Isak will be fit to start for them and if he is unavailable this will be a big miss for them as well.
With a team who are in good form and very strong at home playing a team in poor form who are weak away from home, Serbia should be able to comfortably pick up a victory in this match.
Andorra v Latvia
Due to their loss in their last match, Latvia need a win here to top the group and secure promotion to League C. While they lost 2-1 to Moldova in their last match, their first loss of the league so far, they dominated the match winning 1.93-1.08 on xG. Latvia have already proven themselves as the best team in their group and considering their recent away form, they won’t be too concerned travelling to Andorra for this one. They have won 3 and drawn 2 of their last 5 competitive away matches including a draw with Norway. While Latvia are missing their talisman Roberts Uldrikis, they should still have enough confidence to put in a winning performance in this match.
Andorra have had a great campaign for them, they have completed the double of Liechtenstein and arrive at home for their last match, unbeaten at home so far in the league. Their 0-0 draw with Moldova where they reduced Moldova to very few actual chances was a fantastic defensive effort from them and finishing a campaign unbeaten at home will be way beyond what they hoped to achieve going into this tournament. Despite this Andorra know their only chance of taking anything from this match will likely only be from stopping Latvia scoring.
Andorra have had a great campaign for them but Latvia will give everything in this match to get the win that will promote them and therefore I expect Latvia to win this match, although it may be a tough slog to get that opening goal for them.
Luxembourg v Lithuania
Lithuania go into the last match of the group knowing they will face a relegation play off to keep them in League C. They lost their last 4 matches before only drawing at home to the Faroe Islands in their last match which has culminated in a disappointing campaign for them. The Lithuania manager, Valdas Urbonas, will likely try some new players to test the changes needed if they are to win the relegation play off, so it is unlikely to be Lithuania’s strongest team.
Luxembourg are an increasingly underrated team, Gerson Rodrigues, Danel Sinani and Damien Thill have all played high level football in recent years and provide a quality that previous Luxembourg teams have never had. Luxembourg will want to finish the group off strongly, finishing second in League C for them will be considered a major achievement. Not only that, but the 3-3 draw away in Turkey really marked the improvement made by manager Luc Holtz, in what was a game they really could have won had it not been for a late equaliser.
Luxembourg won 2-1 the last time the teams played and with this game at home for them, they will aim to end the group in style in front of their home fans. Lithuania will not have the drive to put up a fight after already being relegated and I see Luxembourg winning this one comfortably.
Netherlands v Belgium
The Netherlands’ 2-0 win over Poland in their last match was their first match in their last 7 that they kept a clean sheet and both teams had not scored in a match. They can count themselves lucky for this as they probably deserved to concede with the quality of chances Poland created, but more importantly for them, that win means a win or a draw in this match will see them top the group.
They face Belgium who were on the end of a shock 4-1 loss to Netherlands on matchday 1 of this Nations League campaign, however they have been back to their best since. Belgium still haven’t sorted their best defence and 18 year old Zeno Debast started at centre back for them in their last match against Wales due to a lack of available centre backs. Their leaky defence has been an issue for a long time, they have conceded in 9 of their last 11 games and usually rely on their attack to outscore the opposition for them to win. Kevin de Bruyne looks on top form for them, he was superb against Wales and grabbed a goal and an assist and his attacking talent alone will surely see Belgium score in this match.
Both teams are attacking teams, Belgium need to win so they will chase goals and Netherlands need at least a draw so will have to match whatever Belgium score. Between them, only 3 of their last 14 combined matches have seen both teams fail to score so I would expect goals in this one.
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