Austria take on North Macedonia in the Group C at the National Arena Bucharest in Romania. How have the national teams fared recently? What might go on during the game? Follow us below as we take a brief look at the form each national is in and analyze their overall strength.
Euro 2020 has only just begun and it is already full of drama and thrilling moments. The opening game of the tournament saw Italy ease past Turkey with a 3-0 win and the rest of games are unfolding one by one. The match between Austria and North Macedonia will be the second game of Group C as the Netherlands are going to face Ukraine prior to the start of the clash betweenAustria
What will be the fate of the debutants at Euro 2020? Do North Macedonia have the slightest chance of surviving against any of their competitors at the group stage? Let’s find out how both Austria and North Macedonia got to qualify for Euro 2020 and how they might line up against each other.
First-timers North Macedonia will be looking forward to starting off their very first European tournament with a bang, surprising everyone by showing their strength and resilience against bigger teams.
The Euro 2020 will be Austria’s third time taking part in the beloved European competition. They first appeared in the tournament in the Euro 2008 and later returned for Euro 2016. Of course they automatically qualified for the first one and did not get earn their place in a fair fight. It eventually resulted in their disappointing spell, which saw Austria get eliminated in the group stages. They will be motivated to get back at it and prove themselves to be worthy of qualifying for the next round alongside the clear group favorites theNetherlands
Obviously many might rightly think that Austria are the favorites and North Macedonia are quite the underdogs in this clash. But the recent form the underdogs have been in shows something a little bit different than what we might expect. Their fighting spirit is the reason they have qualified for the Euro 2020 Group Stages and they are not going to give up their fight anytime soon now that they are in the real deal.
Of course Austria can simply outperform their rivals in hopes of finishing top of their group, despite facing the giant wall called the Netherlands. Let us take a deeper look at the form each of the national teams have been in and see who’s got the chance to make history and go through to the knockout stages.
Some might think that Austria’s poor run of form is due to the fact that they got to face much stronger opponents. But that wasn’t totally the case as they met Scotland in the World Cup Qualifiers on 25 March, a meeting which they drew 2-2. They later faced Faroe Islands three days after the first match and got to score three goals against their opponents.
But they didn’t even get to keep a clean sheet against a much weaker opponent, who simply had no chance of beating the Austrian national team. While they got to show their force against the much weaker side of Faroe Islands, Austria were humiliated against Denmark, asChristian Eriksen
and his mates ran a rout with a 4-0 on matchday 3 of the World Cup Qualifiers.
It didn’t help much when they lost 1-0 to England and later drew 0-0 against Slovakia prior to their clash against North Macedonia. There is still hope, however, as world-class defenderDavid Alaba
will surely want to showcase his talents to his new fans atReal Madrid
with a stellar display in the Euros. But as a defender, he might have to rely heavily on delivering the ball to the likes of Marko Arnautovic to finish it off.
Austria Possible lineup:
Bachmann; Lainer, Dragovic, Hinteregger, Ulmer; Laimer, Xaver Schlager; Sabitzer, Baumgartner, Alaba; Arnautovic.
North Macedonia have been in an amazing form lately and are one of the brightest underdogs one can follow. They even made history in a David vs. Golaith-eqsque battle againstGermany
as they beat the odds by somehow defeating the 2014 World Cup champions on matchday 3 of the World Cup Qualifiers back in March. They also went completely berserk and put five behind Liechtenstein’s goal, scoring another four goals against Kazakhstan.
Such a run of form will definitely raise their spirits as they look forward to making history once again by becoming one of the main contenders for a spot in Euro 2020’s knockout round.
North Macedonia possible lineup:
Dimitrievski; Ristovski, Musliu, Velkovski, Alioski; Ademi, Nikolov, Bardi; Elmas, Pandev, Trajkovski.
If history is about to repeat itself, then Austria will be in good hearts for the match tonight. The two nations have met only twice before, with Austria winning both games and scoring a total of six goals against North Macedonia’s two goals. Both of the previous meetings between the two sides ended in a 3-1 win in favor of Austria. Will they get to repeat the same results?
On paper, Austria seem like the clear favorites to many, with a couple of world-class footballers serving the Austrian national team. But football is not a game played on paper and anything is possible. North Macedonians will especially be hopeful due to their recent form against big teams.
Swedish Referee Andreas Ekberg and his two compatriots Mehmet Culum and Stefan Hallberg will be officiating the match, with Sergei Karasev from Russia and Bastian Dankert from Germany acting as the fourth official and the VAR referee respectively.
13 June 2021
Kick off time:
National Arena Bucharest; Romania
TRT 1, BBC Sport
ESPN+, DStv Now
Austria (4/5); Draw (23/10); North Macedonia (9/2)