Euro 2016 Group C: Poland to end wait for win over eliminated neighbours Ukraine
Jamie Clark, Sports Editor | June 19, 2016
Ukraine v Poland
- Euro 2016 Group C
- Tuesday, June 21st
- Kick-off: 17:00 BST
- Stade Velodrome, Marseille
- Live on BBC Red Button
Poor Polish record must surely end
Poland haven’t beaten neighbours Ukraine since 2000, losing three and drawing two of the five meetings since. Four points should be enough to see the White Eagles through to the knockout phase of Euro 2016 anyway, but their opponents have already been eliminated.
Although uninspiring when drawing 0-0 with their other neighbours Germany, the Poles are evens with Coral to end that 16-year wait for a victory over Ukraine because of their awesome attacking options and ability to match up physically to their fellow Eastern Europeans.
Yet, given their patchy record in these fixtures, punters may well feel another share of the spoils appeals at a tempting 12/5. Ukraine are certainly deserved 14/5 outsiders to win with an ageing defence that should be pulled apart by Robert Lewandowski and Arkadiusz Milik.
Yarmolenko could spoil Poles’ party
Long-time rumoured Everton target Andriy Yarmolenko has struck first on the last two occasions Ukraine have played Poland, both in qualifying for the last World Cup.
Considering this and the fact a Ukrainian team has never failed to find the net against the Poles, anytime scorer odds of 2/1 for Yarmolenko are very generous indeed. There’s also a superb 7/1 price on him breaking the deadlock here.
Fellow forwards Yevhen Seleznyov (2/1 anytime) and Roman Zozulya (11/4 in the same market) have also scored in this fixture before, so cannot be ruled out of contention if involved.
More needed from Lewandowski
Bayern Munich’s prolific Polish poacher and national captain Lewandowski has been overshadowed by strike partner Milik at the Euro 2016 finals so far.
To live up to an odds-on 4/5 anytime scorer price and 7/2 in the two goals or more market, punters need to see more from Lewandowski who, like fellow inspirational leaders Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Cristiano Ronaldo, is yet to replicate his club form for country on this big stage.
Ajax marksman Milik, meanwhile, has been profligate with chances at the Euros, yet grabbed Poland’s only goal of the tournament so far. Having got joy against an ageing Northern Ireland defence in the pool opener, Milik represents an attractive first scorer alternative at 5/1 to Yarmolenko.
Glik the glue holding Poles together
With the White Eagles’ back four yet to be breached, in no small part down to the experience of Torino skipper Kamil Glik, a win to nil for Poland understandably appeals at 21/10.
This is going against the history of this fixture, however, and as good as Glik has been, particularly against Germany, he was part of a Polish defence that let four Ukrainian goals in across their last two meetings.
For that reason, backing the Poles to win but both teams to score makes more sense at a fantastic 15/4 price.
Coral’s top tip: Poland are primed to end their poor record against already eliminated Ukraine, but expect the latter to go down fighting. Fine value is available at 15/4 for a Polish win and both sides finding the target.