Finland V Czech Republic – Wednesday 21st May. 5:00PM. Live streaming on Bet365
While 32 nations begin preparations for next month’s FIFA World Cup, both Finland and Czech Republic will have to make do with turning their attentions ahead to the Euro 2016 qualifiers.
The pair meet in Helsinki on Wednesday and will be looking for positive performances as they look to build ahead of the road to France.
It should be an interesting match and it’s live, on Bet365.
Finland Fancy Chances In Helsinki
The hosts are unbeaten in three matches and will be determined to gain a positive result in front of their home support.
Mixu Paatelainen’s men were dealt a deadly blow in their bid for a World Cup spot as they were drawn against both Spain and France in Group I and never really stood a chance of reaching the finals due to that impossible draw.
However, they did well to finish third ahead of Georgia and Belarus and will also take a lot of heart from holding Spain to a 1-1 draw in Gijon.
The Finland squad does boast a few familiar faces, namely Celtic’s Teemu Pukki and former Spurs man Teemi Tainio. Some fans may also recognise captain Niklas Moisander, who plies his trade with Dutch champions Ajax.
Finland are far from fantastic, but with the far easier group of Greece, Hungary, Northern Ireland and the Faroe Islands, they have a great chance of progressing to the Euro’s in France – it would be the first time in their history that they’ve qualified for a major tournament.
With this in mind, the Eagle-Owls will want to begin their preparations for that campaign in the best fashion possible. However, the Czech’s will provide stern competition.
New Look Czech Looking Towards Future
Like Finland, the Czech Republic have already turned their attentions towards the road to France and will be out to make a statement in Helsinki.
Manager Pavel Vrba has named a number of inexperienced players for the match with Finland, including Yeovil Town custodian Marek Stech. In total, 12 of the 18 players selected have under 10 caps for the national side. However, there is still some experience within the squad – notably Arsenal’s Tomas Rosicky, who will captain the side in his 95th appearance on Wednesday.
The Czechs have been given a potentially difficult group for 2016, which includes Netherlands, Turkey, Latvia, Iceland and Kazakhstan. However, with two teams going through automatically, Vrba will be confident of leading his team to the finals in France. It would continue their record of qualifying for every European Championship since breaking away from Slovakia, although they have yet to reach a single World Cup.
The visitors have won three of the four head-to-head meetings, including a 3-0 win in their only other meeting on Finnish soil. However, that was back in 2005 and the inexperienced side could be in for a much tougher time here.
Finland V Czech Republic Live Stream & Betting
With the match being streamed live on Bet365, it may be worth waiting for the first few minutes before placing any bets. However, you can back Czech Republic at 13/10. Meanwhile, Finland are 21/10 and the draw is available at 9/4.
This new look Czech Republic side certainly has some talent, but their inexperience should give Finland a confidence boost ahead of the match in Helsinki.
Combined with the fact that this is a friendly, which means performance is king, it could be a game with a fair number of chances at either end.
BTTS is 8/11 with Bet365
This is a chance for several new faces to make a name for themselves ahead of the Euro 2016 qualifiers and we’re expecting both teams to come out of the blocks strongly.
However, some of these players have just finished long club seasons and could dwindle towards the closing stages. Meanwhile, the possibility of frequent substitutions could also hinder the flow during the second period
Highest scoring half: 1st half is 21/10 with Bet365