Ukraine and Serbia Battle For Spot In Euro 2020

The big soccer event of *next* Summer will be the UEFA European Football Championship more commonly known as Euro 2020. It will be the 60th anniversary of the competition and as a special ‘one off’ event it will be played in 12 cities in 12 European countries from June 12, 2020 to July 12, 2020. Portugal are the defending champions by virtue of their victory in Euro 2016. Also notable–the Euro 2020 competition will mark the first time that the ‘video assisted referee’ (VAR) system will be used in the European Championship event.

Portugal has already clinched the top spot in Group B leaving Ukraine, Serbia, Luxembourg and Lithuania to compete for second place. Ukraine is fully capable of finishing in second place. They started the qualification campaign with a very impressive 0-0 away draw against mighty Portugal and followed that up with a 2-1 road win against Luxembourg. Serbia is really the biggest challenge left standing between them and Euro 2020 qualification. The sides haven’t played since 2016 when Ukraine won 2-0. In fact, Ukraine has won all four previous meetings without conceding a goal.

Serbia has been extremely erratic of late and despite having a fair amount of talent have the ability to look downright awful on any given day. They’ve never been much of a ‘road warrior’ and are winless in their last three away games though they did hold Portugal to a 1-1 draw in their only qualification matchup so far. At any rate, they can’t match Ukraine’s current form–they’re unbeaten in 12 of their last 13 international competitive fixtures and they’ve stepped up the defensive intensity of late allowing just a single goal in their past three contests.

The only thing worse than an inconsistent road team is this type of team playing in an opponent’s tough home venue. At the Arena Lviv, the Ukraine side has never lost with a record of 14-2-0. The UEFA soccer odds show this is a very close game but given their tough home pitch and strong defensive form Ukraine is the play.


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