Denmark to win at 1.73 with Pinnacle - 2 units (min 1.67)
- Russia got past Finland in St Petersburg last time out, winning 1-0, generating 0.98xG to Finland's 0.77
- Russia won't have home advantage for this game; it will be played at the Parken Stadium in Copenhagen (Russia have played all their games in St Petersburg)
- Russia have been poor away from the motherland recently; let's examine...
- In EC qualification, they won 4 of 5 games, but Belgium were the only team close to Denmark's level. They lost that game convincingly (3-1, 2.85-0.58xG). Belgium far from their strongest XI too, no Lukaku or De Bruyne.
- In WC qualification, we saw them twice on the road, once in a weak display over Malta (1-3W with 1.4xG) and a 2-1 loss against Slovakia.
- In their 2020 UNL matches, they beat Hungary 3-2 (scored 3 off just 1.12xG), lost 3-2 to Turkey and lost 5-0 to Serbia
- Before these, we had strong WC data on the team, but that was again all on home soil.
- Since 2014 Russia haven't played many top tier teams outside of Russia. The only three competitive games were a loss to Belgium (3-1), a loss to Sweden (2-0) and a 1-1 with England in 2016 (Euro 2016 - England dominated)
- Based on what we've seen so far, there's no reason to expect Russia's performances to pick up. They're frail at the back, and Denmark will test them just as the Belgians did
- Russia will happily play out for a draw in this game, but I don't see them strong enough defensively to keep it at 0-0 for the entire match.
- Russia's team news doesn't look great, Mario Fernandes their starting RB took a nasty fall against Finland and is a doubt. LB Zhirkov is out, his tournament is over and their back-up LB Fedor Kudryashov is also a doubt.
- Daler Kuzyayev who is more attacking and generally deployed as a winger may have to deputize in defence
- All things considered Denmark have been performing remarkably well especially in the chance creation department.
- Despite facing the World No.1's they have the highest xG in the tournament, highest touches in the box, and the highest shot count. If these numbers can be maintained they should have some success here
- In their last 11 competitive games on home turf Denmark have allowed just 5 goals, 4 of which came against Belgium. Generally speaking they're very good defensively, even against Belgium
- Russia have only managed to score once so far and that was courtesy of a moment of individual brilliance (Miranchuk goal vs Finland)
- Denmark can't leave anything up to chance, they need a convincing win to have any chance of reaching the R16
- Sometimes in major competitions you just need some luck along the way, Denmark have not had that so far, they've been on the extreme end of bad variance when we consider what transpired in the Finland game.
- Denmark's team news is still positive from what I understand, everyone who was available for the Belgium game should be available here
Final Word: I don't believe Russia can keep this game competitive. Expect Denmark to come out of the blocks strong and overwhelm the Russians.