Netherlands – Poland | 04/09/2020

The Netherlands will open their UEFA Nations League Group 1 campaign with a clash against Poland in Amsterdam on Friday night. Ronald Koeman’s departure to take charge of Barcelona has seen Dwight Lodeweges appointed the nation’s caretaker manager, and the 62-year-old will be determined to pick up a positive result on home soil.

Drawn in Group 1 of League A, the Netherlands face a tough assignment in the 2020-21 UEFA Nations League, with Italy and Bosnia-Herzegovina making up a difficult section alongside a dangerous Poland outfit.

Holland actually reached the final of the 2018-19 competition, ultimately losing 1-0 to Portugal in the final, with Goncalo Guedes’s second-half strike providing the difference between the two sides in Porto.

Oranje were in impressive form during qualification for Euro 2020, winning six of their eight matches and suffering just one defeat to finish second in Group C behind Germany.

Koeman led the Netherlands to five wins from their final six European qualification matches, and they will be present in next summer’s finals, having surprisingly missed out four years ago in France.

The home side have actually only lost three of their previous 15 matches against Poland in all competitions, recording six wins in the process, including victories in their last three encounters

Dwight Lodeweges takes charge of the Netherlands for the first time, as the losing UEFA Nations League (UNL) finalists of 2018/19 look to go one better. Lodeweges has avoided defeat in all six of his prior managerial home debuts (W5, D1), plotting a clean sheet in four of those games.

With just five places in FIFA’s rankings separating Netherlands (#14) and Poland (#19), the hosts’ record since EURO 2016 qualifying vs teams ranked between #10 and #20 is: W4, D3, L2. Notably, the ‘Oranje’ scored at least once in all of those games, bagging 2+ goals in six, for 3.33 total goals per-match on average.

Jerzy Brzęczek heads into his 17th game in charge of Poland boasting 1.75 points per game (W8, D4, L4). Poland are unbeaten in ten of their last 11 games following a six-game winless run. Six of the eight aforementioned victories came without reply, though they did draw their only game vs similarly-ranked opposition, in the form of Italy (1-1).

Still seeking their first UNL victory, Poland conceded fewer goals than any other bottom-placed League A nation in 2018 (1.5 per-match). Furthermore, they have (if counting 90 minutes only) drawn five (L1) of six games played on foreign soil vs higher-ranked opposition since EURO 2016, despite scoring the opener in four.

Date: 04/092020
Time: 21:45
Venue: Johan Cruijff Arena (Amsterdam)
Pick for this match:
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