Euro 2016 Group B: Solid Slovakia can secure success over Russia after Wales blip
Lee Gormley | June 13, 2016
Russia v Slovakia
- Euro 2016 Group B
- Wednesday, June 15th
- Kick-off: 14:00 BST
- Stade Pierre-Mauroy, Villeneuve d’Ascq
- Live on BBC
Slovakia look to bounce back against Russia
After tasting an opening Euro 2016 defeat at the hands of Wales, Slovakia will look to bounce back with victory over Russia in Group B, with the latter having managed to secure a last-gasp draw against England in their maiden outing.
The Slovakians have not beaten their next opponents since September 2010, facing back-to-back losses since that previous win, and are behind 3-2 in head-to-head meetings with the Russians.
Although, despite narrowly being toppled by the Welsh in their opener, Jan Kozak’s side did look otherwise promising throughout that clash and are 9/4 with Coral to secure three points in this crucial meeting at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy.
Leonid Slutsky’s Russians looked on course for a 1-0 defeat to the Three Lions in their first fixture until a stoppage time equaliser from skipper Vasili Berezutski secured a defiant draw, and they are 11/8 for victory here, while another stalemate is 21/10 to occur.
High stakes in second Group B clash
With Home Nation rivals England and Wales not contesting until Thursday afternoon, both Slovakia and Russia will seek a victory to pile pressure on the supposed front runners in this encounter, and the latter would go top above the Dragons with success, though maybe temporarily.
Towering Zenit St Petersburg frontman Artem Dzyuba was a constant aerial target for Russia against England, though the striker was unable to make much of an impact. The 27-year-old will look to change that against Slovakia and he is 6/4 to get off the mark for this campaign anytime.
Key forward Aleksandr Kokorin, also of Russian Premier League giants Zenit, is 13/5 to get his name on the scoresheet this time around, while young CSKA Moscow midfield prospect Aleksandr Golovin is 8/1 to dispatch anytime.
The Russian outfit proved they are resilient enough at the back to withstand strong pressure with their solid display against Roy Hodgson’s England, while their defenders are a threat from set-pieces, and captain Berezutskiy is 11/1 to add another goal after his first fixture heroics.
Hamsik holds key to Slovakia success
Napoli midfielder Marek Hamsik put on a classy showing against the Welsh Dragons, with the skipper showcasing exactly why he is hailed as his country’s star man, and the Serie A ace is 2/1 to find the target anytime against Russia.
The playmaker will have bulldozing striker Adam Nemec ahead of him in attack and the current free agent is 13/2 to put himself in the shop window by opening proceedings here, with previous substitute goalscorer Ondrej Duda 2/1 to add to his Wales strike.
Manchester City youth product Vladimir Weiss, also previously of Rangers and Bolton Wanderers, showed glimpses of why he was once a highly promising talent in England, and the quick-footed wideman is 11/2 to tuck home for his nation anytime.
With this being the penultimate Group B clash, both countries will look to secure a positive result and head into their respective final outings with a chance of edging into the knockout stage, as England and Wales battle it out the following day.