Sweden v Belgium
Sweden and Belgium face off at the Allianz Riviera in the sides’ final group E match.
Sweden come into the match on the back of a 1-0 defeat to Italy. Erik Hamren’s side looked set to pick up a point before Eder’s solo effort broke the deadlock in the 88th minute.
“If we look at the match I think we played very well. We defended well and we really succeeded in closing down Italy’s game, but it was only towards the end that we lost a bit of concentration,” Hamren told journalists after the match.
Hamren was also quick to defend star man Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who is yet to get off the mark at Euro 2016: “Zlatan did what he needed to do in the last two matches. It was tough for him today because Italy defended very well… but Zlatan is one of the greatest forwards I have ever met.”
On Tuesday, Zlatan announced that he’ll be retiring from international football at the end of the Euros.
With just 1 point to their name, anything less than a win for Sweden will likely spell their exit from the tournament. And the end of Zlatan’s illustrious Sweden career.
Belgium, meanwhile, put out one of the performances of the tournament in their 3-0 win over Ireland. Goals from Romelu Lukaku (2) and Axel Witsel sealed the victory, with Kevin De Bruyne putting in a world class shift.
Marc Wilmots made three changes to the side which lost to Italy, opting to include the likes of Mousa Dembele and Yannick Carrasco.
Speaking after the match, Wilmots said: “We spoke privately between the games; we knew the team wanted to give their all, they had to be mentally ready and that goes for the players on the bench too.”
The victory leaves Belgium on 3 points, needing only a draw to guarantee a top 3 finish. More importantly, the result will be a wakeup call to the other sides in the competition who had written off Belgium’s chances.
Sweden predicted line-up
Belgium predicted line-up
101 Great Goals prediction: Sweden 0 – Belgium 2