The Gazprom Arena will host Belgium and Russia’s opening match of their respective Euro 2020 campaigns on Saturday night. As the two teams prepare to face off in Group B, here are our Euro 2020 predictions – Belgium vs Russia.
Indeed, Roberto Martinez’s men have their sights set on becoming the world’s number one ranked nation.
Meanwhile, Russia has realistic hopes because they’re aiming to just finish in the group’s top two.
- Kevin De Bruyne underwent surgery for facial fractures he sustained in the Champions League final. So, he is unlikely to start against Russia.
- Roberto Martinez wil also l have to manage Eden Hazard carefully this summer because of his injury. Therefore, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the Real Madrid winger gain momentum heading into the tournament. Thorgan, his own brother, may thus take his place.
- Axel Witsel is in Belgium’s team, but he had his own catastrophic Achilles injury at the start of the year. So, it would be surprising if he participated at all this summer.
- On Saturday, Jason Denayer and Thomas Vermaelen will compete to complete Belgium’s back three.
Belgium possible starting lineup: Courtois; Alderweireld, Denayer, Vertonghen; Castagne, Tielemans, Dendoncker, Carrasco; Mertens, Hazard; Lukaku
- Russia, we think, will use the same 3-4-2-1 system as Belgium, with captain Artem Dzyuba leading the charge.
- Yuri Zhirkov, 37, is preparing to play in his fifth international event for Russia, still in the Russia squad.
Russia possible starting lineup: Shunin; Barinov, Dzhikiya, Semenov; Fernandes, Zobnin, Ozdoev, Kuzyaev; Miranchuk, Golovin; Dzyuba
Euro 2020 Predictions – Belgium vs Russia
- Belgium will likely glide through this group. However, the possible absence of both Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne for their first game makes the game unpredictable.
- With neither De Bruyne nor Hazard slated to start, Belgium may not win as easily as many predict. Still, they should still start with three points on Saturday.
- On the other hand, Russia has only lost one of their past five matches leading up to Euro 2020. Nonetheless, in each of their last three games with Belgium, they have conceded at least three goals.
In this match, if the Belgium team played with Hazard and De Bruyne they would surely win an easy victory.
However, the injury-plagued Belgians give Russia somewhat of an opening.
Despite this all, Cherchesov’s side has been dubious in recent months.
After defeating Russia twice in qualifications, we can expect Belgium to win for the third time in a row.