Day 11 - The EURO 2012 Crystal Ball
June 19, 2012 @ 15:00 pm
The final group battles it out to earn a place in the quarter finals!
England v/s Ukraine:-
England hope the entrance of Wayne Rooney will help them to go through to the quarter finals.
The 3-2 victory over Sweden on Friday has given them confidence, with goals scored by Andy Carroll, Theo Walcott and Danny Welbeck suddenly giving Hodgson a range of options for an effective attack.
It is the return of Rooney that will give England an extra jolt of optimism, as they seek the point they need to clinch a place in the final eight.
With Hodgson yet to confirm which player Rooney will replace in the starting line-up, his other major selection dilemma concerns Walcott, the decisive influence in Kiev after transforming a 2-1 deficit into a 3-2 victory.
Ukraine started the tournament well by beating Sweden 2-1, thanks to an inspired performance by their captain Shevnchenko. However, they experienced a reality check against France, who inflicted a huge 0-2 loss on the home team. The defence, their weak link against Les Blues, should come up with an improved show if they have any hope of progressing further in the tournament. The team cannot entirely rely on their veteran captain for goals and should be more motivated in attack.
Blokhin has fielded the same defence and midfield in both games so far, with Anatoliy Tymoshchuk shielding the back four and Serhiy Nazarenko, Yevhen Konoplyanka and Andriy Yarmolenko supporting the strikers.
France v/s Sweden:-
Erik Hamren has no fresh fitness doubts heading into the last game of Group D with France. However, Mikael Lustig will probably remain sidelined with the hip problem that forced him out of the loss to England.
Jonas Olsson is expected to play at centre-back once more, with Andreas Granqvist continuing at full-back. Johan Elmander came back into the starting XI against England after being ruled out of the game against Ukraine, but faces competition from Markus Rosenberg up front, while Ola Toivonen could come back in for Anders Svensson.
Yohan Cabaye has been nursing a slight knock on the leg, which forced him to train separately from the rest of the team during the week. He could, therefore, be replaced by Rennes midfielder Yann M`Vila, who revealed that he was fit enough to play in the 2-0 win over Ukraine after he missed the opening-day draw with England.
In defence, Gael Clichy is expected to continue at left-back after coming in for Patrice Evra in the victory over Oleg Blokhin`s troops, but Laurent Koscielny could be in line to make his debut with Adil Rami not having the best of games the last time around.
Elsewhere, Karim Benzema will have to hold off competition from Olivier Giroud up front due to the Real Madrid striker`s failure to find the back of the net at Euro 2012, so far; while Jeremy Menez should keep his place in the side after scoring against Ukraine.
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