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Written By Onyeka Daniel

At the ongoing Euro 2024 tournament, in group E, Slovakia will be up against Romania at the Deutsch Bank Park, in Frankfurt, with German referee, D. Siebert. Before the start of the tournament, it was largely expected to that these two teams would struggle in this tournament.

Lagging behind Belgium and Ukraine, but with just one game before the end of the group stage, they’re place second and third respectively, equal on points (3 each) and all teams having equal opportunity of making it into the next phase.

Slovakia

For Slovakia, this is their third consecutive Euros tournament that they’ve qualified for, and for ti’s current edition, they will be hoping to do better than they did in 2020, where they’re knocked out at the group stage with three points.

After their impressive win against Belgium in the fiesta game, deemed to be the biggest upset in the European Championship, they failed to keep up the momentum in their second game, losing to to Ukraine 2-1.

They had initially taken the lead in the 16th minute, but failed to keep their opponent out, so they will be hoping for a better outcome in this match. For Francesco Calzona, the 4-3-3 formation stays, and not even the uncertainty surrounding the availability of David Hancko can change that.

Key Players: While Milan Skriniar will be expected to lead the defense once again, it will be up to their midfield trio, Stanislav Lobotka, Ondrej Duda and Juraj Kucka to keep things tidy and act as a link between the attack and the defense.

Slovakia Possible Starting Lineup: Dubravka; Pekarik, Vavro, Skriniar, Hancko; Kucka, Lobotka, Duda; Schranz, Bozeník, Haraslin

Romania

They were initially expected to be primarily spectators, but no one will forget in a hurry their spirited display again Ukraine in their first game and in this match, they definitely have their destiny in their hands. A win in this match, plus a Ukraine avoiding defeat against Belgium will see them top the group, a different reality from the expectation that would be exiting the group stage.

They will even finish in the top two and qualify for the round of 16 if they avoid defeat, and even stand a chance of qualifying as the best places third team. For their coach, Edward Iordanescu, the 4-1-4-1 formation, plus the starting lineup from their defeat to Belgium should remain unchanged for this encounter.

Key Players: Spurs centre-back, Rade Dragusin will be responsible for marshaling the back line, while Parma pair, Dennis Man and Valentin Mihaila will be looking to do some damage down the wings, but they will be counting on the experience of their captain, Nicolae Stanciu to help keep the team on their feet.

Romania Possible Starting Lineup: Nita; Ratiu, Dragusin, Burca, Bancu; R Marin, M Marin, Stanciu; Man, Dragus, Mihaila

Head To Head

Read Also: Euro 2024: A Quick Slide Into Group E

Both Teams have met seven times, four at the Euros and three in friendly encounter, and Romania have the upper hand with three wins (all at the Euros) and the remaining ended in a draw.

Verdict

With both teams having an equal chance of making it into the knockout stage, depending on the result from this match and the other match it will definitely be a close game, with either side not wanting to concede. (0-0 or 1-1).

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