Our prediction for this Nations League match:
All eyes will be on Stadion Slaski when Poland and Portugal face each other in the UEFA Nations League Group 3 derby. The Poles did well to hold Italy to a 1-1 draw on the road in their first group game, with the team sharing the spoils with Republic of Ireland in a friendly last month as well. Poland are determined to make amends for the unsuccessful World Cup campaign and Thursday’s football match could be the turning point for Robert Lewandowki and Co. Napoli attacker Arkadiusz Milik has been in a fine form at the start of the new Serie A campaign and he will be yet another man to watch in the home team. Seeing that Portugal head into Thursday’s football game without key player Cristiano Ronaldo, we believe that there is a big value in betting on Jerzy Brzeczek’s troops.
Highlighted Player (Robert Lewandowski):
After scoring 36 goals in 59 league games for Znicz Pruskow, Robert Lewandowski joined Lech Poznan in June, 2008. The 184-cm-tall attacker scored 18 goals in 28 appearances for the club in the 2009/2010 Ekstraklasa campaign and during the season he was on Borussia Dortmund’s radar.
The Polish forward signed a four-year deal with the Bundesliga side in June, 2010 and he quickly established himself as the team’s key attacker. Lewandowski was producing excellent performances with the Millionaires between 2010 and 2014 and it has to be noted that he won two Bundesliga trophies with the club (2010/2011, 2011/2012). He participated in the 2012/2013 Champions League final with Borussia Dortmund, but the Millionaires were beaten by fellow Bundesliga side Bayern Munich in the title game.
However, he betrayed Borussia Dortmund fans in 2014 as he signed a four-year deal with the Bundesliga giants. Lewandowski impressed in the 2016/2017 Bundesliga campaign as he scored 30 goals in 32 league games for Pep Guardiola’s troops. The Polish footballer represented his homeland at Euro 2016 in France and he scored one goal at the showpiece tournament in France.
Highlighted Team (Portugal):
Portugal started competing at the biggest stage in the 1930’s, but they had to wait for almost seventy years to establish themselves as a top side. The third place finish at the 1966 World Cup was a one-off result as the Selecao needed another 40 years to get past the group stage, reaching the semi-finals at the 2006 World Cup in Germany.
Portugal enjoyed more success on the continent, finishing third at the 1984, 2000 and 2012 European Championships, while losing in the final to Greece at the Euro 2004 that was held on home soil. Despite being able to count on one of world’s best ever footballers Cristiano Ronaldo, the Selecao have yet to lift a major trophy and they will not have too many opportunities to do so before the Real Madrid superstar retires.
Eusebio remains the most famous footballer to have played for Portugal, while Luis Figo, Simao Sabrosa, Pedro Pauleta, Rui Costa and Nani are also worth mention. The Selecao currently boast an impressive pool of world-class talent and it should not be long before they end the trophy drought.