This promises to be an interesting clash…
Stretching The Momentum
Russia didn’t qualify for the 2010 World Cup finals but they have made a very positive start to their Euro 2012 qualifying campaign as they are currently in pole position in Group B with nine points from four matches.
However, Dick Advocaat’s side are just two points clear in the lead with three teams level on seven points and need to score more than they have done. Nevertheless, since the next batch of qualifying games are not going to played until next year, Russia can look forward to refurbishing their team and papering the cracks that they have shown so far.
A win against Belgium tonight should be firmly on the Russians’ mind but they must also try to perform well. Russia have got the results so far but their performance has yet to be fully convincing and against the Belgians they will aspire to better themselves in every department.
Look For Reconstruction
Belgium are no European superpowers but their start to the Euro 2012 qualifying campaign has been worse than they would have expected.
Currently Georges Leekens’ side are fourth in Group A with just four points from as many matches and lie eight points behind group leaders Germany and three behind Austria, who are second.
The match against Russia comes at a time when the Belgians will hope to recover their winning spirit and boost their moral ahead of the next round of matches in the new year. Belgium have a number of good and promising youngsters and this could be the platform that they could be tested on.
The big-name players all are in. Andrei Arshavin is likely to start and so are Yuri Zhirkov and Aleksandr Kerzhakov.
Uncapped midfielder Vadis Odjidja-Ofoe has been called up to the squad and so has Sunderland goalkeeper Simon Mignolet while defender Laurent Ciman will earn only his second cap for the Belgium national team.