One of this nations are playing in the World Cup for sure, the other gets in the playoffs. I think the direct qualification goes to Cristiano Ronaldo&Co.
Portugal are standing with 8-0-1 and a goal difference of 30-4. They only lost the away match vs Switzerland in September 2016, ending 2-0. Portugal are coming from the win 0-2 away vs Andorra (6) on Saturday. Ronaldo were resting in the first half, but came in after the break and scored the 0-1 goal. Both Ronaldo and Carvalho will probably start tonight.
Switzerland are standing with 9-0-0 and 23-5 goal difference. Because of the weaker goal difference, Portugal will qualify if they win tonight. Switzerland are coming from 5-2 at home vs Hungary (3) on Saturday. This was the first match Switzerland conceded goals in a year, last time was back in October 2016. It is expected to see Ricardo Rodriguez back tonight.
Andrey Rublev and Damir Dzumhur have both played a lot of good tennis of late on the major stage and the Bosnian in particular . Still he has a negative record of 0:2 against the Russian who is a better player than he is in my mind , has far more firepower on both of his wings and when he is sharp he is very deadly . Dzumhur is more clever of the two players and plays more tactical style of tennis but dont think that it will mean for too much in this kind of a match . Of the 6 sets that they have played against each other the Russian has won 5 of them and I expekt for him to win yet another match against the Bosnian and to pass the round on the Masters tournamnet in Shanghai.
I like Damirs attitude to the game and his fighting spirit but Rublev has far more talent for the game.
Poland need just one point to ensure qualification to the World cup next year in Russia and they should have no problem getting it tonight. They have been impressive this campaign with only the 4-0 loss at Denmark the only blemish on an impressive qualifying campaign. They beat Armenia 6-1 in the last round with start striker Lewandowski scoring a hattrick that night and he now has 15 goals in qualifying. With the kind of form he is in right now. few would back against him getting on the score-sheet here and he is priced short to get on the scoresheet at 1.44 in the anytime goalscorer market and 2.75 to score first in the game. Poland have scored and impressive 24 goals with 11 of that scored in four home games. They have managed to score at least twice in all home games but have conceded in three of those games with their only clean sheet coming against group minnows Kazakhstan.
Walsall couldn’t do much more in the previous game played in League One, as the side visited Wigan, side that is fired up for promotion this season and does well for now, staying defeated with a 2:0 result, without properly showing their best possible potential in offense. Hosts opened the game better, reached the leading goal in 30th minute via Grigg and sealing the victory in 54th with another goal from the same player however this time via penalty kick.
It was second consecutive game without victory for Walsall, as they remained without only one in last six matches in League One. Currently are at sixteenth positin with thirteen points earned which is four more than relegating worries sides for now. During the midweek, they suffered defeat on a penalty kicks in Checkatrade Trophy at home against Coventry after a 2:2 draw in first ninety minutes.
Home team will miss important forward Tyler Roberts (7/3) who is with U21 national selection.
Turkey is far below the powerful nations in Europe for years and years now, but the nation now has a chance to reach the World Cup group stage, being drawn in pretty difficult (for them) and equal group along side Croatia, Iceland, Ukraine, Finland and Kosovo. With two rounds till the end, they are at third posiiton having two points less than leaders from Iceland and Croatia.
That means that the Turks can only remain alive in this battle with all three points here against Iceland, side against which they’ve lost last October on the road with 2:0 result. During the previous qualifying phase, Turks lost to Ukraine and were almost overwritten in the battle, however bounced back with a bit unexpected victory at home over Croatia with narrow 1:0 result (only goal scored in 75th minute via Tosun) now knowing that anything but a three pointer is a negative result, while in case of a victory their chances wouldn’t be small, at least for the second position as they visit Finland in the last round.
Turks will miss defenders Hakan Balta (50/2, Galatasaray), Hasan Ali Kaldirim (20/0, Fenerbahce) and midfielder Yasin Oztekin (6/0, Galatasaray) in comparison to previous few call-ups.
Montenegro didn’t look like having big chances to get back into the race for the qualifying ticket, but thanks to three latest victories they have improved the situation now and this match now comes as probably the most important one so far in the qualifiers. Poland is leading the table with three points more than Denmark and Montenegro, so the hosts surely can’t afford to lose in this one.
Moreover, they will be visiting Poland in the last round, so in case of winning both matches, they even have a chance to end up first in the end and earn a direct ticket. However, nobody is thinking about that, since they firstly need to get a victory over Denmark, in order to keep their chances high – even if not, they are still competing for the play-off stage via second position. In the last match played, Montenegro won over Romania narrowly at home 1:0, but are overall in a decent form having two more consecutive victories, over Kazakhstan and Armenia.
Forward Fatos Beciraj (49/9) is suspended for this, while the team won’t count at recently called-up goalkeeper Vukasin Poleksic (39/0), defender Marko Basa (39/2), midfielders Nebojsa Kosovic (4/0) and Marko Bakic (11/0) and forward Mirko Vucinic (46/17).
Walsall didn’t look well last time out, as the side suffered 2:0 defeat on the road against Wigan in eleventh round of League One on Saturday afternoon. They weren’t expected to get something out of the match, but the team was really limited to a passive role and couldn’t do many important things in offense.
On the other side, players of Wigan looked way better and more dominant, scoring a goal via Grigg in each halftime, second one from penalty for completely deserved and expected victory overall. This was their first defeat after four official matches, as the side continues to be in the second part of the table, at the moment at thirteenth position, with four points more than relegating worried sides. They are playing way better at home and need to get something here in order to stay competition for the knockout stage. Rotation is surely expected.
Sporting made their first setback in the season last time out, but surely having their Champions League game against Barcelona in their heads, as they took just a point in a 1:1 draw away to Moreirense last Saturday evening. They had much more of the ball possession but didn’t move the ball that well in attack, with the home team remaining far more dangerous in attack.
Hosts took the lead in 42nd minute via Costa, however Sporting responded via an own goal in 60th minute, tried to attack later on, but couldn’t actually create real goalscoring chances. They are now two points behind Porto at the table and can only get back to the leading position in case of a victory here. As for Champions League, they suffered narrow defeat at home against Barcelona 0:1 with an own goal and will have hell of a task to progress further in group together with Juventus and Olympiakos as two other opponents.
Hosts should be playing in 4-4-1-1 formation with Dost as central striker, plus Fernandes as central offensive midfielder behind him. Forward Seydou Doumbia (3/0) picked up injury against Barcelona and misses this one. Forward Daniel Podence has problem with finger and remains doubtful.
Eupen actually gave a good fight last weekend away from home against Mouscron and had the lead at the end of the first halftime but still stood defeated in the end with 3:2 result. Hosts took the lead via Govea in 35th minute, while the visitors responded well and deservedly reverted the scoreline till the halftime whistle via goals from Tirpan and Leye.
They weren’t looking that bad in the second halftime either, but their defensive lineup simply needs to improve in order to avoid the relegation battle, as the hosts somehow easily reached the three pointer via an own goal in 53rd and Bolingi in 69th minute. Eupen now stands second from the bottom with four points earned in first eight rounds, which is two more than rock bottom placed Oostende. Knowing that all four points were earned in front of own fans, there is no other option for them but to try to attack here.
Midfielder Abdelkarim Fadlalla (1/0) is probably out for this one, same as injured forward Eric Ocansey (6/1).
Schalke host Leverkusen in this game with a poor run of 2 straight losses in their last 2 games to Bayern Munich and Hoffenheim without even scoring a goal. They had conceded 5 goals in that time and have yet to build on their 3 wins that they started out the season with. Defensively they have conceded in 5 out of their 6 games played so far, which has seen their struggles particularly multiple in the last game. Schalke will come into this encounter relying on the likes of Burgstaller, Konoplyanka, Di Santo, Embolo to try and get back to their scoring form that they have struggled on.