Ukraine vs Serbia, Friday’s match for the qualifying round, Group B, for the EURO 2020 Qualifiers.
The Ukrainians made their debut in the Euro 2020 qualifiers drawing a scoreless draw against Portugal, the current holder of the Eurocup title at the home of the rivals. They did not make a big game.
The Portuguese team dominated the match with possession of the ball most of the time (59% to 41%), tried many more attempts on goal (17 to 6) and sent more balls to the target (8 to 1). But they did not put the ball in the net.
The performance of Ukraine was better in the second match, also away from home, against Luxembourg, who yielded the first three points. After they were outnumbered, the Ukrainians turned the score to 2-1. However, they showed limitations on goal accuracy. They tried 15 times, but only three had the right direction.
Which is an irony for a team that is directed by Andrij Shevchenko, who is a former player who had as his power goal finalization, his highest quality. With it, Ukraine secured the first place of group 1 of League B of the Nations League and the access to First Division of the next edition of the tournament.
They will now face two home matches. After Serbia, they will receive Luxembourg for the fourth round, in a game that was scheduled for June 10.
The Serbs will defend on Friday an unbeaten eight games streak (four wins and four draws). It was started in the Nations League by winning first place in Group 3 of League C, which secured a place in League B in the next edition of the tournament.
It was extended with a 1: 1 friendly with Germany in a friendly game played in March and a repeat of the final score in the game against Portugal, also in the home of the rivals, in the match for the second round of European qualifying, which marks the team’s debut of Serbia, who were happy in the first round.
Although the Serbians came out ahead with a goal scored by Tadic on penalties in the ninth minute of the opening leg and suffered a draw in the 42nd minute through a goal signed by Danilo Pereira, the Portuguese promoted an even bigger massacre than in the game against Ukraine.
There were 28 attempts to score. The accuracy, however, was lower. Only five of them reached the opposing goal. The visiting team tried nine kicks and three went in the right direction.
With a well-defined and secure playing standard, Ukraine, at home, makes the prognosis in their success the best guess for their meeting with Serbia on Friday for the third round of qualifying for Euro 2020.