The round 3 in the EURO 2020 qualifiers in Group J is played on Saturday and Finland will host Bosnia-Herzegovina
Finland vs Bosnia-Herzegovina 19:00 Ratinan Stadion, Tampere
Bethard odds: 1.37 – 4.60 – 8.25
The match between Finland and Bosnia-Herzegovina is a very important one in Group J as it looks in the group that Italy will most likely win it and then the second position is decided between Finland, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Greece.
Finland sits currently on 4th position in the group with 3 points from their opening two games. They lost their opening match away to Italy 2-0 but then bounced back immediately to beat Armenia also away from home 0-2. This match against Bosnia will be their first home match and at home Finland has been really good recently. Bosnia is currently third after their 2-1 home win over Armenia and their 2-2 home draw against Greece. This is their first away match in the group.
Finland team news
Finland is undefeated in their last 7 games at home from which they have won six and drawn one. Out of those seven games, they have kept a clean sheet in six of them. Only Turkey managed to score (2-2) in the last game of the World Cup qualifiers back in 2017.
Finland does not really have star players if you do not count the goalkeeper Hradecky (Leverkusen) or striker Pukki (Championship player of the year – Norwich) so they have to base their game on team play and good solid defense. This is exactly what they have done under head coach Markku Kanerva and it is working. Their last eight competitive matches (Nations League and EC qualifiers) have all gone under 2.5 goals from which Finland has won five and lost three (all losses away from home).
For this match Finland will only miss Roman Eremenko, Fredrik Jensen and Thomas Lam but none of those have been regular starters so they can be replaced. Still they have a couple of problem positions. Finland likes to play with a 4-4-2 or 4-4-1-1 formation and now comparing to the Armenia game, they are getting back their best full backs. Jere Uronen (Genk) returns to the left and Jukka Raitala (Montreal) to the right. The problems though are on the left midfield position where regular starter Pyry Soiri is not in 90 minute condition and also the second striker position as Jasse Tuominen has not played for a while. This could mean that the defense is better but the offense might lack a bit again.
Bosnia-Herzegovina team news
Bosnia-Herzegovina has been in good form themselves recently as they won their Nations League group and will play in the A-league next time. Under new head coach Robert Prosinecki they have won six games, drawn five and lost only twice. Both of their losses were with 1-0 to Mexico and Spain. They are very difficult to beat despite letting a 2-0 lead against Greece in their last game slip away to a 2-2 home draw.
They might not be as organised as Finland is, but still they look for counter attacking options and the quality of their players regarding technical ability is higher. They will miss though their best midfielder M. Pjanic (Juventus) who is suspended for this game.
Neither team will want to lose this match so expect a tight game with not many goals. My main picks for this match are Finland Draw no bet because of their great recent home record and also under 2.0 goals.