Belgium bounced back after an abject opening display against Italy with a comfortable 3-0 win against the Republic Of Ireland last Saturday, they will look to get the solitary point needed to qualify for the Round of 16 against a misfiring Sweden or namely a misfiring Zlatan Ibrahimovic
Like Cristiano Ronaldo, Ibraimovic is also hunting for a tournament goal that will see them score in four successive European Championships. The race has already undergone two false starts will we finally see someone win the race in this final set of group matches
Sweden needed an own goal in their opening game to rescue a point against the Republic of Ireland but they drew a blank in what was quite a tepid encounter against Italy last Friday. Ibrahimovic was largely kept quiet and the one chance he did have which was offside anyway was embarrassingly spurned wide from a few yards
Sweden have definitely got an over reliance on Ibrahimovic, if he doesn’t tick then the whole team doesn’t tick. Luckily for Belgium that doesn’t seem to be the case, after misfiring against Italy in their opener they showed why they are one of the tournament favourites as they strolled to victory over Martin O’Neill’s Irish side.
After being guilty of missing a key opportunity to level the game against Italy, Romelu Lukaku had certainly found his shooting boots for the game against the Republic Of Ireland. His goals either side of Axel Witsel’s header gave Marc Wilmots’ side all three points and puts qualification destiny in their own hands.
Kevin De Bruyne also showed a marked improvement from the Italy game while the side as a whole looked more balanced with Mousa Dembele in the starting lineup. Unfortunately he had to go off with an ankle injury and Manager Wilmots will be sweating on his availability for this game
If Dembele doesn’t play it would certainly be a blow but Sweden have been so average in this tournament that I think Belgium would still have enough talent at their disposal to not only get the point they need to qualify but actually ending up with all three. I’ll go with Belgium to win and Zlatan failing to make history and registering another blank