Kazakhstan and Scotland meet for the first time in an international football fixture as both the countries look to start their Euro qualifiers campaign with a win at Astana Arena, in Astana, Kazakhstan, on Thursday night (IST).
What competition it is? UEFA Euro Qualifiers, Qualification Round I
Teams: Kazakhstan and Scotland
Kick Off: Thursday 21 March
Match Timing: 08:30 PM (IST)
Where the game is played? Astana Arena (30,000)
TV Info: Ten Sports Network has the rights to stream UEFA Euro Qualifiers matches in India.
UEFA decided to dispense with the drab international friendly fixture with the Nations League. The main idea was to give more meaning and provide more stake to the fixtures. That’s what has happened.
Teams or countries were placed in Leagues according to their UEFA co-efficient rankings. Scotland were in League C, while Kazakhstan were given a League D passage.
To some extent, the tournament allows teams, who have never qualified for the Euros or had little success in achieving this, a chance to be amongst the Euro finals, come the 2020 tournament.
Scotland head into this match on the back of a strong showing in the UEFA Nations League, while Kazakhstan had an indifferent campaign.
For example, Scotland won their Group 1 in League C, and as a winner, they are guaranteed a playoff spot for the Euro 2020, no matter how they perform in their Euro qualification group. That’s the prize of performing well in the UEFA Nations League. To add the cherry on the top, Alex McLeish’s men are promoted to Group B as well.
So in some sense, Scotland won’t be in the immediate pressure to perform in their group, or in the next match against Kazakhstan. The result won’t have any bearing over their Euro aspirations. But don’t expect the visitors to be complacent as Alex McLeish’s squad boast Premier League players. They are all professional and long in the game to understand the importance of momentum.
Kazakhstan, meanwhile, will have to take their qualification matches damn seriously. With just one win in six games, they finished 2nd in League D Group 1. That means, to have any chance of a shot at the Euro 2020, they will have to finish at least 2nd in their group.
Recent form (Last six matches)
Kazakhstan – D D W D L W
Scotland – L W L L W W
SCO vs KAZ Dream11 TEAM NEWS: Injuries and Suspensions
Kazakhstan vs Scotland Team News:
Injured – Midfielder Bauyrzhan Islamkhan, who represents Kairat in the Kazakhstan Premier League, suffered an untimely injury in the training ground and has been left out of the squad. Head coach Michal Bilek has named “Shakhter Karagandy” forward Oralkhan Omirtaev as his replacement.
Suspended – None.
Questionable – None.
Note: Michal Bilek has named a squad which contains 19 players plying their trade in the Kazakhstan Premier League. There are some new faces as well, earning their first international cap.
Key Players – Aleksey Shchotkin, Yuriy Logvinenkoi
Kazakhstan’s full squad is as follows:
Goalkeepers: Stas Pokatilov (Kairat), Igor Shatsky (Shakhtar), Dmitro Nepogodov (Ordabasy)
Defenders: Dmitri Shomko, Yevgeny Postnikov (Astana), Abzal Beisebekov, Yuri Logvinenko, Yan Vorogovskiy, Sergey Malyy (Ordabasy), Eldos Akhmetov, Gafurzhan Suyumbayev (Kairat), Temirlan Erlanov
Midfielders: Bauyrzhan Islamkhan, Islambek Kuat, Baktiyer Zaynutdinov, Serikzhan Muzhikov, Yuri Pertsukh (Astana), (Rostov, Russia), Maksim Fedin (Tobol), Alexander Merkel (Heracles, Holland), Georgy Zhukov (Kairat)
Forwards: Roman Murtazayev (Astana), Bauyrzhan Turysbek (Tobol), Aleksei Shchetkin (Ordabasy), Erkebulan Seydahmet (Levski, Bulgaria)
Injured – Jordan Archer, Charlie Mulgrew, and Barry Bannan all are missing from the squad.
Suspended – None.
Questionable – Andrew Robertson has had dental surgery and is a doubt for the match.
Note: Celtic winger James Forest is in fine form and is expected to start the match. Manager Alex McLeish told the media that Scott McTominay is going to be a mainstay for his team, and that means he is expected to start.
Key Players – James Forrest, Ryan Fraser, Scott McTominay
Here is the full Scotland squad for the upcoming games against Kazakhstan and San Marino. But please keep in mind that Left-back Andy Robertson is a huge doubt for the match.
SCO vs KAZ Dream11 Playing 11 – (Probable) –
Kazakhstan– Dmitro Nepogodov (GK), Gafurzhan Suyumbayev, Yuri Logvinenko, Abzal Beisebekov, Sergey Malyy, Islambek Kuat, Maksim Fedin, Serikzhan Muzhikov, Roman Murtazayev, Erkebulan Seydahmet, Aleksei Shchetkin
Scotland– Scott Bain (GK), Graeme Shinnie, Scott McKenna, David Bates, Callum Paterson, Callum McGregor, Scott McTominay, Stuart Armstrong, James Forrest, Ryan Fraser, Johnny Russell
SCO vs KAZ Dream11 FANTASY TEAM:
INDIA FANTASY PREDICTION:
With Scotland’s qualifying campaign have no or little bearing on their Euro 2020 aspirations, we think Kazakhstan could be the one showing more aggression and intent.
A win for the hosts is our call.
THIS SCO vs KAZ Dream11 MATCH PREVIEW IS BASED ON OUR RESEARCH AND UNDERSTANDING FROM VARIOUS NEWS SOURCES. YOU CAN SELECT YOUR OWN PLAYING 11 ON THE BASIS OF TEAM NEWS AND ALL THE OTHER INFORMATION REQUIRED FROM THIS WEBSITE. USING OUR TEAMS IN ANY CONTEST WILL INCREASE THE PROBABILITY OF HAVING THE SAME EXACT TEAM WITH OTHER USERS CAN LEAD TO THE WINNINGS SPLIT.