The top team in Euro 2012’s Group A will take on the bottom team on June 16th when Russia meets Greece at the National Stadium in Warsaw, Poland. Russia beat the Czech Republic 4-1 in their opening match and then managed a 1-1 draw with co-host Poland in their second encounter. Their four points tops the group.
Greece has just one point which was earned in the Euro 2012 opening game when they drew 1-1 with Poland. They took on the Czech Republic in their second contest and came out on the wrong side of a 2-1 score. Greece has to win this game or they’ll be going home. If they do win they’ll be level with Russia. Poland could finish the group with two, three or five points and the Czechs can finish with three, four, or six.
This means a Greece win could result in a three-way tie for first, depending on the result of the Czech Republic vs Poland game the same day. The way they’ve been playing though, it’s going to take a Herculean effort to take all three points from the Russians. Follow all the action from Euro 2012 on Gamblingnerd.com for all betting details and news.
Greece fell behind 2-0 to the Czechs after just six minutes of play in their match as goals from Petr Jiracek in the third minute and Vaclav Pilar in the sixth minute put them behind the eight ball immediately. Goalkeeper Kostas Chalkias didn’t look too good on either goal and he ended up being replaced in the 22nd minute due to an injury. Michalis Sifakis took his place in between the posts.
The Greeks have started both their games very slowly and have paid the price for it in them. The made a game out of it though and substitute Theofanis Gekas made it 2-1 in the 53rd minute after Czech keeper Petr Cech completely mishandled an easy long ball and dropped it. They might have been on the scoreboard a few minutes earlier when Georgios Fotakis scored on a header from a cross by Torosidis, but was ruled offside.
Russia took a 1-0 lead in the 38th minute in their game against Poland, but Polish skipper Jakub Blaszczykowski levelled the score with a fantastic goal 20 minutes later from about 20 yards out. A win would have guaranteed the Russians a berth in the knockout stages. Goalkeeper Vyacheslav Malafeev was man of the match after pulling off several good saves and Alan Dzagoev scored his third goal of the tournament when he headed in a cross from captain Andrei Arshavin, who played another excellent game.
However, forward Aleksandr Kerzhakov had another brutal outing. He’s played some good football, shown a lot of energy, and found himself in good scoring position in both games, but he missed the net with all seven shots against the Czechs and missed it with his four attempts against Poland.
Based on the first two games of the group stage, it looks like Russia should take this game by a couple of goals.
Sportsbook Ladbrokes latest odds have a Greece victory at 3/1 with a Russian win at 4/6 and a draw at 13/5.