Can Slovakia end a bitterly disappointing UEFA Nations League campaign with back-to-back home wins?
In 2020, the Falcons were relegated from an admittedly tough League B group, below Czech Republic, Scotland and Israel.
Nevertheless, given that Slovakia have qualified for each of the last two European Championships, they were fully expected to make an immediate return to the second-tier.
Well, back in June, that didn’t quite go to plan.
First, Štefan Tarkovič's side were beaten 1-0 at home by Kazakhstan, with Tarkovič sacked less than an hour after full time.
Results didn’t improve under interim boss Samuel Slovák, with his team beaten again by the same opponents, this time 2-1 in Nur-Sultan.
So, despite away victories over Belarus and Azerbaijan in-between, Slovakia are four points behind the run-away group leaders.
Thus, if Kazakhstan accumulate 2+ points from their remaining two fixtures, the Falcons will remaining rooted in League C.
With their promotion chances all but over, new Head Coach Francesco Calzona will be hoping to use these games to prepare for Euro 2024 qualification, commencing in March.
Azerbaijan meanwhile know if they can pull off a shock victory in Trnava they’d leapfrog their hosts.
Gianni De Biasi’s side have only won once in this group so far, but it was a crucial victory last time out.
Mahir Emreli and Ramil Şeydayev on target in a 2-0 victory over Belarus at Dalğa Arena.
So, Azerbaijan sit two points clear of Belarus in the battle to be bottom, thereby avoiding the relegation play-outs.
However, given that they’d only won one of 26 competitive outings beforehand, another Azerbaijani victory seems unlikely.
Slovakia should be far too strong at Štadión Antona Malatinského.