The latest round of matches in Euro 2024 qualifying concludes on Saturday when the three groups which haven’t taken to the pitch in this international window yet do so on what could be a pivotal day of action.
The defending champions Italy will look to enhance their qualifying credentials over the course of Saturday while the likes of Serbia and Denmark are among the other teams looking to take a step closer to Germany next summer.
The leaders England are not in action in this set of matches so the battle for second place will be under the spotlight. Ukraine get the chance to make their claim first when they are involved in the early kick off. They take on North Macedonia where the winners will move into second spot in the group for a couple of hours. That is until Italy are on show. The defending champions look to have something of a penalty kick when they welcome Malta in the later kick off.
The top two meet in Group G on Saturday evening where one of them will take a massive step towards the main tournament when the leaders Hungary play host to a Serbia side who will be looking to power home from here on in. The losers of that match will leave the door open to Montenegro in the final international break. The other game in this group sees the bottom two sides meeting when Bulgaria host Lithuania in the earlier kick off of the two.
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The other group on show on Saturday is Group H where we have three matches across three different kick off times. The bottom two in the section get the action underway when Northern Ireland take on San Marino. Slovenia go into the day on top of the group but they will know that just one point separates the top four and Finland will be looking to move above them when they meet in the second game. The last match sees Denmark looking to take a big step towards qualifying when they host Kazakhstan in the later kick off.
The match between Hungary and Serbia grabs my interest on Saturday evening with neither side really being able to afford to lose with Montenegro waiting to pounce on whichever team does lose next week. Hungary probably have a little more room to move which should see Serbia looking to get after their opponents here. That makes me think that both teams to score, which already landed when these sides met in the reverse meeting, can land for a second time in this group.
Hungary are usually very fluent at home and with the creative and classy Dominik Szoboszlai pulling the strings I don’t see that changing, especially against a Serbia defence which ends up all over the place far too easily for comfort. Serbia do attack in great number though and can impose themselves on any side and given that neither team will want to lose this I think we’re in for an entertaining encounter, one which sees both sides finding the back of the net.
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