MX23RW : Wednesday, July 28 05:18:21| >> :600:4287474:4287474:
Jun 10, 2021 at 5pm UK at A. Le Coq Arena
EstoniaEstonia
2-1
LatviaLatvia
Kait (5', 40')
Mets (66'), Tamm (69'), Pikk (80'), Paskotsi (83'), Poom (84'), Anier (90+4')
FT(HT: 2-0)
Ikaunieks (84' pen.)
Oss (18'), Saveljevs (45+1'), Jaunzems (78'), Krollis (88')

Preview: Estonia vs. Latvia - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Thursday's Baltic Cup clash between Estonia and Latvia, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Estonia take on Latvia at the A. Le Coq Arena in Tallinn on Thursday evening in a winner-takes-all clash.

The two sides are locked on points heading into the final round of fixtures in the 2020 Baltic Cup, which has been pushed back by a year due to the coronavirus pandemic.


Match preview

Latvia coach Dainis Kazakevics pictured on March 27, 2021© Reuters

Latvia have won the biennial competition, contested between themselves, Estonia and Lithuania, a record 13 times.

That includes a run of four successive triumphs since they last failed to lift the trophy in 2010, with Lithuania coming out on top that time around.

You have to go back to 1938 for the most recent of Estonia's successes in the competition, but they can put an end to that run with victory on Thursday.

The Wolves top the three-team group on goal difference after beating Lithuania 3-1 in their opening game last week.

Paulius Golubickas cancelled out Markas Beneta's own goal, but second-half strikes from Eduards Emsis and Roberts Uldrikis earned Latvia all three points.

Estonia coach Thomas Haberli during the match on March 27, 2021© Reuters

Estonia also beat Lithuania in their last Baltic Cup game through a Henri Anier strike on the hour mark in Vilnius, meaning that they trail Latvia by a goal in the group standings.

The Blueshirts followed up that victory over Lithuania with another 1-0 win against Finland - a side that have previously competed in the Baltic Cup themselves.

That win over Euro 2020-bound Finland was secured thanks to Rauno Sappinen's penalty with 59 minutes played, making it back-to-back wins for the first time since 2017.

Latvia faced a tougher opponent in their friendly on Monday, going down 7-1 to Germany at the Merkur Spiel-Arena in Dusseldorf.

That was a chastening experience for Dainis Kazakevics's side, but all focus is on this showdown with Estonia and what could be a fifth Baltic Cup triumph in a row.

Estonia Baltic Cup form:
  • W

Estonia form (all competitions):
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • W

Latvia Baltic Cup form:
  • W

Latvia form (all competitions):
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • D
  • W
  • L



Team News

Estonia's Rauno Sappinen in action with Czech Republic's Pavel Kaderabek on March 24, 2021© Reuters

Thomas Haberli was only appointed in January and is still getting to know his Estonia squad, perhaps explaining why plenty of changes were made between the wins over Lithuania and Finland.

The hosts will name their strongest possible side for Thursday's clash, however, which should see Sappinen and Anier partnered up top.

After scoring the winner against Finland, FC Flora striker Sappinen now has six goals in his last 10 international appearances.

Latvia, likewise, will name their strongest XI for this match. Uldrikis has started both of this month's fixtures and is expected to retain his place up top here.

Igors Tarasovs and Vitalijs Maksimenko are among those pushing for recalls following the heavy friendly defeat to Germany earlier in the week.

Estonia possible starting lineup:
Igonen, Tamm, Pikk, Kuusk, Paskotsi, Vassiljev, Kait, Kreida, Anier, Sappinen, Sinyavskiy

Latvia possible starting lineup:
Ozols, Oss, Cernomordijs, Jurkovskis, Zjuzins, Savalnieks, Kaklins, Ciganiks, Emsis, Jaunzems, Uldrikis


SM words green background

We say: Estonia 2-1 Latvia

Latvia may have been thrashed by Germany in a friendly last time out, though they are in charge of their Baltic Cup fate thanks to a 3-1 win over Lithuania last time out.

However, Estonia are in good form thanks to back-to-back wins, and we can see them overcoming Latvia - who they are ranked 22 places above in the FIFA rankings - to end their long wait for silverware in the competition.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data


ID:450634:1false2false3false:QQ:: from db desktop :LenBod:collect9156:

How you voted: Estonia vs Latvia

Estonia
65.6%
Draw
15.6%
Latvia
18.8%
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Wednesday's key events


ROWING
· Team GB have dominated the men's coxless fours in recent Olympics, winning on each of the last five occasions, but this year they face some stiff competition. They are one of four rowing medal contenders for Great Britain today (2.10am)

SWIMMING
· Katie Ledecky and Ariarne Titmus face off again in the women's 200m freestyle final, with the latter having already come out on top in the 400m event (2.41am)
· Team GB's Abbie Wood is among the medal contenders in the women's 200m individual medley final, while teammate Alicia Wilson will also take part. USA's Kate Douglass was the fastest qualifier, while world and Olympic record holder Katinka Hosszu is also involved (3.45am)
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RUGBY SEVENS
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CYCLING
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