Our prediction for this Nations League match:
Hampden Park will host Friday’s Nations League between Scotland and Israel. The two teams face each other in the Euro playoffs semis as well, meaning that they will use this clash as a good preparation for the October showdown. Scotland boss Steve Clark can count on key players for the Nations League opener, and it is no wonder the hosts are seen as favourites to win the match.
A man to keep an eye on in the home side will be full-back Andy Robertson, who won the Premier League trophy with Liverpool last term. Israel, on the other hand, were struggling in the Euro 2020 qualifiers, with the team suffering four defeats in the last five games in the process. Even though there will be no spectators at Hampden Park due to the fierce of coronavirus spread, we are tempted to put our money on the hosts.
Highlighted Player (Oliver Burke):
A product of the Nottingham Forest football academy, Oliver Burke made his domestic debut in 2014, when he was only 17 years of age. Born in Kirkcaldy, Oliver Burke is the captain of Scotland Under-21 side who’s faced plenty of criticism ever since leaving the Championship side.
Having left Forest for Red Bull Leipzig in 2016 in a £13 million deal Oliver Burke became the most expensive Scottish player in history, whereas his hit the record book all over again the very next year when West Bromwich Albion saved him from a German misery in a £15 million deal. Burke was regularly praised for his physical ability during his time in the Bundesliga, but Leipzig coaching staff had plenty of tactical questions hanging over his head.
A precocious talent who had only scraped the surface of his own potential, Burke is looking to get his career back on track. Despite being only 21 years of age, Burke already has 5 senior appearances for Scotland under his belt.
Highlighted Team (Israel):
Israel are the direct successor of the Mandatory Palestine national football team. The Israelis received full UEFA membership in 1994, 20 years after leaving AFC and they have been facing European sides in the World Cup qualifiers ever since. Israel participated at the 1970 FIFA World Cup finals in Mexico, but they failed to make it to the knockout stages of the showpiece tournament.
The Israeli national football team have yet to qualify for the final stages of the European Championship, but they made it to the quarter-finals of the Olympics on two occasions (1968, 1976). Israel play their home games at both Sammy Ofer Stadium in Haifa and Teddy Stadium in Jerusalem.
Yossi Benayoun is the most famous and the most capped Israeli footballer and it has to be noted that the pacey midfielder played for the likes of Racing Santander, West Ham United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea in the past. Israel play their home games in blue shirts and blue shorts, whilst they wear white shirts and white shorts when playing on the travels.