Euro 2020 Qualifiers Predictions: Spain vs Malta
November 16, 2019,
Estadio Ramón de Carranza, Spain
Having already qualified for the Euro 2020, Spain face the worst side from their group Malta on Saturday in a game that could seal Spain’s spot at the top of the table. They need just 1 point from the next 2 games to top Group F.
Spain were flying high having won the first 6 games. However, a draw in the next 2 games brought them down to earth. Meanwhile, Malta have been struggling throughout the campaign. They won their Euro 2020 qualifiers opener but had a man sent off. Since then they have failed to compete properly.
Spain’s performance in European Qualifiers:
Wolverhampton Wanderers attacker Adama Traore had been set to feature for Spain having been called up to the senior squad for the first time, but he had to withdraw due to an injury.
Midfielder Dani Olmo and defender Pau Torres could make their debuts for Spain.
Morata, Paco Alcacer and Gerard Moreno are battling for one position, and the former could get the nod having scored in each of his last six appearances for Atletico Madrid.
Rodrigo is out with a back injury.
Spain are likely to use a 4-3-3 formation.
Predicted starting XI: Kepa Arrizabalaga; Jesus Navas, Sergio Ramos, Pau Torres, Jose Gayá; Santi Cazorla, Rodri, FabiànRuiz; Mikel Oyarzabal, Alvaro Morata, Dani Olmo.
Malta’s performance in European Qualifiers:
Veteran defender Steve Borg will miss the match through suspension, meaning that there is expected to be a spot at the back for Jonathan Caruana.
Juan Carlos Corbalan, who turns out for Gzira United, is set to feature in midfield, while 38-year-old skipper Michael Mifsud could get the nod alongside Kyrian Nwoko in attack.
Colchester United’s Luke Gambin is also expected to win his 23rd cap for the Reds in a wide area.
Mifsud has 41 goals for Malta but no other player has managed more than four, which is an indication of the troubles facing the away side on Friday night.
Predicted starting XI: Henry Bonello; Nikolai Muscat, Jonathan Caruana, Andrei Agius, Joseph Mbong; Juan Corbalan, Nicky Vella, Rowen Muscat, Luke Gambin; Michael Mifsud, Kyrian Nwoko
Euro 2020 Qualifiers Predicted Results:
- Malta have lost their last 7 European Championship matches and their fortunes are unlikely to change on Saturday.
- Spain are undefeated in their last 8 European Championship matches. After winning the first 6 games, they drew their last 2 games. In fact, Spain had won their last 14 Euro qualifiers games before the draws in the last 2 games. They are expected to return to winning ways on Saturday.
- Spain have scored 19 goals in 8 Euro 2020 qualifiers so far. Expected them to run riot against a lowly Malta side which seat on last in Group F table and have conceded 18 goals.
- Spain have conceded just 5 goals in 8 games so far while Malta have scored just 2, both on the opening day of the campaign. Spain might end up with a clean sheet. In fact, Malta have scored just 1 goal against Spain in 8 games – in a 12-1 loss in 1983.
- Spain have scored in their last 38 matches. They have scored at least twice in 11 of their last 14 matches but only once in each of their last two games. However, they might be able to score multiple goals once again.
- 18 of Spain’s last 25 goals have been scored in the second half of matches. Another big 2nd half is on plate.
- Sergio Ramos has scored in eight of his last 11 matches for Spain. He has also scored ten penalties for Spain (from 12 taken), including the last seven in a row. He will become Spain’s joint ninth highest goalscorer next time he scores, moving level with Julio Salinas (22). He will move joint eighth on that list alongside Alfredo Di Stéfano if he scores twice. Expect Ramos to join Salinas at least, if not Di Stefano.
- Alvaro Morata scored a brace in the reverse match and might find the net once again.
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