How will Finland line up at UEFA Euro 2020?
Which players would be among the 11-member squad of Finland? Sportmob has come up with a list of the players we guess would be the main players at UEFA Euro 2020.
The Football Association of Finland controls the Finland national football team, which competes in men's international football games. Since 1904, the squad has been a FIFA member, and since 1957, it has been a UEFA member.
Finland had never qualified for a major tournament before securing a place at UEFA Euro 2020 (which was postponed by a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic), and they are the only Nordic team (together with the Faroe Islands) to have never made it to the FIFA World Cup finals.
After decades of relative obscurity, the country began to make headway in the 2000s, achieving remarkable success against established European teams and climbing to 33rd place in the FIFA World Rankings in 2007.
After a string of bad results, they sank to an all-time low of 110th place in the FIFA rankings in 2017, but have since risen to 58th place as of June 2020.
Finland's finest result in the 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign was a 1–1 draw against defending world champions Spain. They came in third place in Group I, behind Spain and France, with five teams.
Finland came in fourth place in Euro 2016 qualifying, but it had another notable performance. Former European champions Greece, who had reached the second stage of the 2014 World Cup and were the top seeds in their qualification group, were defeated 1–0 by the Finns thanks to Joel Pohjanpalo's goal.
Finland finished fifth in their 2018 World Cup qualification group, with only two wins, one of which was over Iceland, the group's top finisher.
How will Finland line up at UEFA Euro 2020?
The UEFA EURO 2020 schedule for Finland's games in Group B: (All kick-off times are shown in CET: Central European Time)
Saturday 12 June
: Denmark vs Finland (18:00, Copenhagen)
Wednesday 16 June
: Finland vs Russia (15:00, St Petersburg)
Monday 21 June
: Finland vs Belgium (21:00, St Petersburg)
Finland Euro 2020 squad will use the 3-5-2 formation. The 3-5-2 defensive system is a new take on an older style.
A modern back three, which may be modified to a back five if necessary, makes up the defense in a 3-5-2 system (5-3-2).
Two defensive and three offensive midfielders are frequently used in midfield. Two of the attacking midfielders who play on the wing can play both winger and fullback depending on their position.
With three central defenders and typically two defensive midfielders, this method of play creates a tremendous amount of stability in the middle, but it often sacrifices opportunities to play out wide.
When using a 3-5-2 formation, the depth and width of the team are well-spaced.
Sportmob has selected 11 players who we believe have a chance to make it to the main team. All of the players who will be considered for a spot in the
Finland Euro 2020 squad
are listed below:
Lukas Hradecky, Anssi Jaakkola, Jesse Joronen
Paulus Arajuuri, Robert Ivanov, Thomas Lam, Daniel O'Shaughnessy, Jukka Raitala, Joona Toivio, Jere Uronen, Nicholas Hamalainen, Sauli Vaisanen
Nikolai Alho, Fredrik Jensen, Glen Kamara, Joni Kauko, Robin Lod, Rasmus Schuller, Pyry Soiri, Tim Sparv, Robert Taylor, Onni Valakari
Marcus Forss, Lassi Lappalainen, Joel Pohjanpalo, Teemu Pukki
Below is a list of players we presume will be major representatives of the Finland Euro 2020 squad along with a short description for each.
GK: Lukas Hradecky
Lukas Hradecky (born 24 November 1989), is a Slovak-born Finnish football goalkeeper who plays for Bayer Leverkusen and theFinland national team
Hradecky, a Finnish international, was awarded Finnish Footballer of the Year three years in a row by the Football Association of Finland between 2016 and 2018.
At the age of 20, he made his international debut for Finland in May 2010 and now has over 60 caps.
He played in nine of Finland's 10 UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying games, helping the national team earn its first-ever UEFA European Championship appearance.
Hradecky was named to Finland's under-21 football team for the 2009 UEFA European Under-21 Championship, but he was forced to withdraw because of a knee injury During the 2011 UEFA European U21 Championship qualification, he was Finland's first-choice goalkeeper.
On 3 June 2011, Mixu Paatelainen selected him to start his debut UEFA European Championship qualification game against San Marino in Serravalle.
He solidified himself as a regular in Finland's national squad during the autumn of 2011, appearing in UEFA European Championship qualification matches against Moldova, the Netherlands, and Sweden.
Lukas, due to his outstanding performance is most probably going to be the main goalie in the Finland squad for Euro 2021.
CB: Paulus Arajuuri
Paulus Verneri Arajuuri (born 15 June 1988) currently plays as a center back forPafos
in the Cypriot First Division and for the Finland national team. Paulus will be a member of the Finland squad for Euro 2021.
On 3 June 2008, Arajuuri made his debut for Finland's under-21 football team in a friendly against Poland in Jyvaskyla. Arajuuri was selected to play for Finland's U-21 national team in the 2011 U-21 Euro qualifiers.
In September 2009, he was a member of the squad that faced the Netherlands and Poland and has since become a regular. Arajuuri has also competed in the International Challenge Trophy for Finland's U23 national squad.
On January 18, 2010, Arajuuri received his first cap for Finland in a friendly against South Korea at Malaga, Spain.
In the 84th minute, he came on as a replacement. On October 11, 2015, he scored his first goal for the national team in a UEFA Euro 2016 qualification match against Northern Ireland.
Arajuuri has been called up to play against Sweden in a UEFA Euro 2020 pre-tournament friendly match on May 29, 2021.
CB: Joona Toivio
Joona Toivio (born March 10, 1988) currently plays as a defender forBK Hacken
of the Allsvenskan and the Finland national team.
Klubi 04, AZ, Telstar, Molde, Djurgarden, and Termalica Nieciecza were among his past clubs.
Joona Toivio joined Hacken in Sweden in 2018 after leaving Termalica Nieciecza on a free transfer.
On August 19, 2018, he made his competitive debut for the club in a 2–0 away win over Sundsvall, assisting on Alexander Jeremejeff's 54th-minute goal.
Toivio scored in Hacken's 3–0 victory over AFC Eskilstuna in the 2019 Svenska Cupen Final on May 30, 2019.
Toivio was the captain of the under-21 team and played both midfield and defense for them.
Toivio has been capped 70 times for Finland since making his senior debut in 2011.
He was named to the final 26-man team for the rescheduled UEFA Euro 2020 tournament in June 2021 and will be a part of the Finland squad for Euro 2021. Finland is competing in its first major tournament.
CB: Sauli Vaisanen
Sauli Vaisanen (born June 5, 1994) currently plays forChievo
and is a member of the Finland national team. He began his senior club career with Honka before joining AIK in 2014 at the age of 20.
Vaisanen made his Serie A debut versus Lazio on August 20, 2017. For the 2018–19 season, he was loaned to Crotone.
Vaisanen signed a contract with Serie B team Chievo on August 24, 2019.
At the age of 22, Vaisanen made his international debut for Finland in October 2016.
He played in five of Finland's ten UEFA Euro 2020 qualification matches, helping the national team reach the group stage of the European Football Championship for the first time.
Vaisanen was a member of the Finnish national youth team, which he occasionally captained.
Vaisanen debuted in a FIFA World Cup qualifying match in Laugardalsvollur on October 6, 2016, when Hans Backe named him to the starting eleven for a match against Iceland.
On May 29, 2021, Vaisanen was called up for a UEFA Euro 2020 pre-tournament friendly match against Sweden and he will be present at the
Finland squad for Euro 2021.
LWB: Jere Uronen
Jere Uronen (born July 13, 1994) is a fullback for Belgian Pro League clubGenk
and the Finland national team. Uronen will probably be a key player of the Finland squad for Euro 2021.
Uronen made his international debut for Finland at the age of 17 in May 2012 and has since earned over 40 caps, including appearances in the 2014 and 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying tournaments.
In UEFA Euro 2020 qualification matches, he was a regular member of the national squad, and he assisted Finland to achieve its first-ever spot in the group stage of the European Football Championship competition.
At the age of 17, he was selected to play for Finland U21 in a qualifying match against Slovenia on August 8, 2011.
He made his senior debut with Finland on May 26, 2012, playing full minutes in a 3-2 victory against Turkey, making him the third-youngest player in the national team's history.
Uronen made his FIFA World Cup qualification match debut against Georgia on October 12, 2012, when Mixu Paatelainen named him to the starting eleven.
On June 9, 2018, he scored his first international goal in a friendly match against Belarus at Tampere Stadium.
Uronen was called up to play Sweden in a UEFA Euro 2020 pre-tournament friendly match on May 29, 2021.
RWB: Nikolai Alho
Nikolai Aleksanteri Alho (born March 12, 1993) currently plays as a right-back for MTK of the Hungarian Nemzeti Bajnoksag I.
Alho was born in Finland and raised there, but he also holds British citizenship.
In January 2017, Alho joined Halmstads BK of the Allsvenskan. The team was relegated to Superettan after a poor season.
For the 2018 season, Alho returned to HJK. HJK won the Veikkausliiga after a great season. This was Alho's fourth domestic title.
Former HJK manager Mika Lehkosuo used Alho as a right-back during the 2018 season. Alho, who was noted for his speed, aggression, and ability to cross, was an ideal fit for a modern-day right back.
During the 2019 season, Alho made the transfer and had a solid season as a right back.
At the start of the 2021 winter transfer window, he joined MTK of Hungary's Nemzeti Bajnoksag I.
On the 24th of January 2014, he made his senior debut for Finland in a friendly match against Oman in Nizwa Sports Complex in Nizwa, Oman.
On May 29, 2021, Alho was called up for the UEFA Euro 2020 pre-tournament friendly match againstSweden
and he will be playing in the Finland squad for Euro 2021.
DM: Glen Kamara
Glen Adjei Kamara (born October 28, 1995) now plays forRangers
in the Scottish Premiership and for the Finland national team.
We believe that Glen is going to act as one of the main players in the
Finland squad for Euro 2021.
On February 27, 2019, Kamara scored his first goal in senior club football, starting a 4–0 home win over his former side Dundee.
Kamara was a member of Finland's under-19 and under-21 teams.
In a friendly against Estonia in June 2015, he was an unused replacement for the senior side.
On November 9, 2017, he made his debut in a friendly match against the same country, winning 3–0.
On October 15, 2018, he netted his first international goal in a 2–0 home win over Greece in the UEFA Nations League.
Kamara has been called up for Finland's first major tournament, the UEFA Euro 2020, which will take place in June 2021.
CM: Tim Sparv
Tim Sparv (born February 20, 1987) is the captain of Finland's national team. He most recently played as a midfielder for AEL in the Greek Super League.
Sparv was the second-youngest player in the squad for the 2003 FIFA U-17 World Championship, which was held at home, however, he did not play.
On October 7, 2006, he made his Finland U21 debut, and he had a key role in Finland's victorious 2009 European Championship qualifying campaign, appearing in nine of ten games and producing three goals.
During the 2009 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship, he was named team captain and scored a penalty in a 2–1 loss toEngland
on June 15, 2009.
Sparv made his senior squad debut in a friendly match against Japan on February 4, 2009, which resulted in a 5–1 loss.
He made his FIFA World Cup qualification debut against Wales in Helsinki Olympic Stadium on October 10, 2009, when Stuart Baxter named him to the starting lineup.
On September 4, 2015, he was selected captain of the national team for the first time for a match against Greece.
Sparv had been called up to play Sweden in a UEFA Euro 2020 pre-tournament friendly match on May 29, 2021. Based on his performance, we think he would be picked to play in the Finland squad for Euro 2021 as one of the main players.
CM: Robin Lod
Robin Lod (born April 17, 1993) is a offensive midfielder who now representsMinnesota United
and the Finland national team. Robin will be participating in the Finland squad for Euro 2021.
Lod's contract with Panathinaikos expired on June 30, 2018, and despite efforts to renew it, the player left the club on a free transfer due to debt-related restrictions put on Panathinaikos regarding the transfer and re-signing of players over the age of 23.
Lod joined Sporting de Gijon in the Segunda Division on July 23, 2018. On August 26, 2018, he made his Gijon debut and netted his first goal in a match against Gimnastic de Tarragona.
Lod joined Minnesota United of MLS on July 16, 2019. On October 30, 2013, he made his national team debut against Mexico in a friendly match at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego.
Lod scored his first international goal in a 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying game on 7 October 2016, giving Finland the lead before losing 3–2 in the final minute to Iceland.
ST: Joel Pohjanpalo
Joel Julius Ilmari Pohjanpalo (born September 13, 1994) is a striker who currently plays forUnion Berlin
on loan from Bayer Leverkusen and is a member of the Finland national team.
Pohjanpalo made his U21 debut for Finland against Slovenia on June 5, 2012, when he was 17 years old.
Pohjanpalo made his senior national team debut in a 3-0 win over Cyprus on November 14, 2012, when he came on as a 70th-minute substitute for Teemu Pukki.
In a friendly against Slovenia, he came close to scoring when his shot hit the post and was finished by Hamalainen.
He scored his first international goal in the next friendly game against Hungary, coming on as a substitute and tying the game.
He debuted in a UEFA European Championship qualifying match against the Faroe Islands on September 7, 2014, as an 89th-minute substitute for Teemu Pukki.
ST: Teemu Pukki
Teemu Eino Antero Pukki (born March 29, 1990) currently plays forNorwich City
in the Premier League and for the Finland national team.
Pukki debuted for Finland in 2009 and has since earned over 90 caps, scoring 30 goals. He's only three goals away from surpassing Jari Litmanen as Finland's all-time leading scorer.
In Finland's UEFA Euro 2020 qualification campaign, Pukki scored 10 goals in ten games, taking the team to their first-ever international tournament.
On March 22, 2013, he netted his fifth goal for his country, an equalizer in a 1–1 draw in World Cup qualifying against the reigning world and European champions Spain.
Finland was promoted from League C to League A in the 2018–19 UEFA Nations League.
Pukki scored the single goal in each of Finland's first three matches, which included home and away matches against Hungary and Estonia.
In the UEFA Euro 2020 qualifications, Pukki scored 10 goals to help Finland qualify for their first major tournament, the UEFA Euro 2020.
On May 29, 2021, Pukki was called up for the UEFA Euro 2020 pre-tournament friendly match against Sweden, and in our opinion, he will most probably be a key figure in the
Finland squad for Euro 2021.
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