Poland enter Euro 2020 under new management, with Paulo Sousa taking the reins earlier this year and looking to guide the nation out of a European Championship group stage for only the second time in their history, a feat they managed in the previous tournament.
The Eagles enjoyed a relatively straightforward qualification campaign, finishing atop Group G and some 11 points clear of third place. Despite that, Jerzy Brzeczek was sacked in January, and Portuguese coach Sousa has succeeded him, with the former Leicester and Swansea manager taking on his first international gig.
As for Slovakia they finished third in Group E of the qualifiers and have entered Euro 2020 via the play-offs, famously breaking Northern Ireland hearts in Path B. Stefan Tarkovic’s side could prove a dark horse, with the likes of Milan Skriniar, Stanislav Lobotka and Martin Dubravka no longer making this ‘Marek Hamsik FC’.
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Poland vs Slovakia: Match Stats
Goals have not proved an issue for Poland this year, nor in the qualifiers, and you can probably guess why. Robert Lewandowski netted a quite unfathomable 41 Bundesliga goals to smash Gerd Muller’s record, and that form has permeated the national set-up in 2021, with the Eagles notching 10 goals in five games this year alone.
Slovakia will be buoyed they boast Inter bulwark Skriniar and competent Premier League ‘keeper Dubravka among their ranks. The duo are formidable defensive barriers on their day, keeping a clean sheet against Austria in their most recent international match, and that should help pacify the relentless scoring exploits of Lewandowski, though he always seems to find a way.
Poland vs Slovakia: Corner Stats
Poland are not a side accustomed to winning a lot of corners, or at least, their recent form would suggest. Incredibly, Sousa’s men failed to receive a single corner in two successive matches against England and Russia, with the nation famously conceding from a set-piece against Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions in March’s World Cup qualifier, with Harry Maguire netting a late winner. It’s a familiar tale for Slovakia too, who, in that aforementioned meeting with Austria, failed to register a single corner, and conceded eight, though with Skriniar dominating the box aerially, Dubravka scarcely panicked.
Poland vs Slovakia: Cards Stats
As for cards, both these nations are relatively well-behaved. Poland have collected just four bookings in 2021, with Sousa’s tactical blueprint placing an emphasis on flair football rather than a set-up-to-frustrate approach. Slovakia, likewise have spent little time on the naughty step, receiving five yellow cards since the turn of the year.
15 Nov 2013 – Poland 0-2 Slovakia – International friendly
26 May 2012 – Poland 1-0 Slovakia – International friendly
14 Oct 2009 – Poland 0-1 Slovakia – World Cup qualifying
15 Oct 2008 – Slovakia 2-1 Poland – World Cup qualifying
07 Feb 2007 – Poland 2-2 Slovakia – International friendly
Slovakia have been the more dominant nation this century, but the winds of success have changed for Poland in recent times. Since Lewandowski burst onto the scene as an insatiable goal-getter the nation have turned the tide and emerged as a dark horse to cause one or two upsets this summer. That said, just one win against Slovakia across their last five international meetings makes for grim viewing from an Eagle perspective.