Sweden are set to host Holland in their last Euro 2012 qualifier, on Tuesday, October 11, 2011.
Holland with a 100% win record (only one of three teams in the ongoing qualifiers) have already qualified from their group for next year’s finals in Ukraine and Poland. Sweden can hope to join them, as the best runners up, if they can stop the Dutchmen from winning the last qualifier on Tuesday. However, results of matches between other teams could have an impact on Sweden’s automatic qualification, and their safest bet is to try and take full points from the game.
Sweden are already guaranteed a place in the play-offs having beaten Finland 2-1 , last week, thereby getting three points adrift of Finland. Sweden therefore have the motivation to go all out for a win, and this could prove to be the most exciting match of the day, for football fans.
Sweden will miss Zlatan Ibrahimovic who is serving a one-match suspension after his second yellow card in Holland’s game with Finland last week. He is likely to be replaced by Ola Toivonen.
Ahead of the game, Holland coach Bert van Marwijk will miss the services of many of his star performers, owing to injury concerns; they include Maarten Stekelenburg, John Heitinga, Hedwiges Maduro, Wesley Sneijder and Ibrahim Afellay and Arjen Robben.
Michel Vorm is expected to keep goal, while Jeffrey Bruma is expected to play in place of Heitinga, in the back line. Kevin Strootman and Mark van Bommel are expected to pair off in midfield, and Rafael van der Vaart is likely to replace Sneijder, with Robin van Persie in charge of the right flank.
Head to head, Holland have 10 of the 22 games between these sides, with Sweden winning 7 and the remaining ending in stalemates. But Sweden’s home record against Holland is better, with the hosts having won 4 of 7 home games while losing 2 and drawing the remaining one.
Holland start as 6/4 favorites while a draw is quoted at at 12/5. But although Sweden are quoted at 17/10 making them less fancied to win, they have the chance to cause an upset against an injury-hit Holland squad, on Tuesday.
Sweden’s probable eleven: Isaksson, Lustig, Mellberg, Majstorovic, Olsson, Larsson, R. Elm, Kallstrom, Wilhelmsson
Holland’s probable eleven: Vorm, Van der Wiel, Bruma, Mathijsen, Pieters, Van Bommel, Strootman, Van Persie, Van der Vaart, Kuyt, Huntelaar
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Jinxatious is the Chief Editor of SportingAttitude.com
An avid writer, on an eclectic range of subjects, he brings to bear editorial experience garnered with a national newspaper in South-East Asia. He also has sportscasting experience, as a cricket commentator, and his passion for sport extends beyond Cricket, to Football, Tennis, and Olympic Sports.