The Finnish Cup (Suomen Cup) is on its Semi-final stage and the two games are KPV vs Ilves and VPS vs IFK Mariehamn. This is the best and fastest chance for these 4 teams to get into Europe for next season. Only takes two wins anymore.
KPV vs Ilves 18:30 Keskuskenttä, Kokkola
Bethard odds: 4.55 – 3.15 – 1.90
KPV made it this far in the Cup by being 3rd in their group and then knocking out VJS in the Last-16 2-0 and RoPS in the quarterfinals 1-2. Ilves won the same group that also had KPV and then they bet FC KTP 2-0 in the Last-16 and then FC Honka on penalties 1-2.
KPV and Ilves have met each other twice this season. In the Cup Ilves beat them 1-2 and then in the league they beat them 0-2. This time KPV though can play against them in their own stadium which will give them a boost.
KPV team news
KPV has played really well in the Finnish Cup but unfortunately those efforts have not been replicated into the league where KPV is on last position with only 2 points from their opening seven games. Their biggest problem has been goalscoring as they have only found the net 3 times which is by far the lowest amount in the league. Out of those seven games, they have only managed to play on their own stadium once and that was in the last round where they drew 0-0 with FC Lahti. That was the first time in the league this season where they managed to keep a clean sheet. Maybe their defense is getting better.
KPV is a traditional team but they have never won the Finnish Cup. They have come close twice as they lost in the final in 1982 and 2006. The Finnish league they have won once in 1969. From this game they will miss Isaac Shaze.
Ilves team news
Unlike KPV, Ilves has managed to get their Cup form also into the league where they are the only undefeated team still left. They actually have not lost any game in 2019 and this also counts friendlies and cup games. They are top of the league with four wins and three draws. Their main advantage has been their organized team play and defense as they have only conceded 1 goal in those seven league matches. Offense has not been that good yet as they keep winning 0-1 or 0-2. In total they have only scored 6 goals so far.
Ilves also is a traditional team and they have on the Finnish Cup once in 1983. They have won the Finnish league twice on 1979 and 1990.
Ilves missed Lauri Ala-Myllymäki, Mikael Almén, Matias Ojala, Santeri Haarala, Naatan Skyttä and Samuel Afum during their 0-1 win on the weekend against RoPS. They could miss this game also.
This game could go to overtime and maybe even penalties. Our pick is draw and Bethard has that with 3.15 odds .
VPS vs IFK Mariehamn 18:30 Elisa Stadion, Vaasa
Bethard odds: 3.30 – 3.05 – 2.30
VPS made it this far in the Finnish Cup by winning three of their five games in the group stage. In the Last-16 they beat 3rd tier club Gnistan on overtime 1-3 and then in the quarterfinals they surprised FC Inter away from home 1-2. IFK Mariehamn made it through from their group on 4th position, but in the last-16 they beat TPV and then in the quarterfinals they knocked out FC Lahti.
The teams have not met this season yet but last season they drew twice home and away and in Vaasa VPS won once 4-1.
VPS team news
VPS has been the draw specialist this season as they are still without a win in the league but out of their seven games, they have lost only once. Six straight draws have given them six points and they are currently 10th in the league. Their problem has been in keeping their game together for the whole 90 minutes. They have many periods where they are dominant but that can totally change in the other half. They have led the game three times at half time but never they have been able to keep that lead until the end. In six of their games there has been both teams to score.
VPS has never won the Finnish Cup but they did lose the final in 1972. They have won the Finnish league twice but those were long time ago in 1945 and 1948.
VPS will miss greek winger Stavrothanasopoulos and Jerry Voutilainen, Jesper Engström and Juho Lähde are doubts for this match.
IFK Mariehamn team news
IFK Mariehamn has been surprisingly good this season but some defensive lapses mean that they are currently 7th in the league with 10 points. Offensively they have been excellent as they have scored 15 goals in 7 games so far in the league with only FC Inter scoring more. They have a very balanced and even team where anyone can score. They have so far seven different goal scorers. They are 2-1-1 so far in their away games this season and their playing style suits
IFK Mariehamn might miss central defender Ketting as according to the football federation info, he is suspended, but IFK Mariehamn says that he can play this cup game. Not sure which is true.
The draw is again the most likely option with 3.05 odds. Here though both teams to score is the main pick. (Bethard)