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How Slovakia could line up against Poland

How Slovakia could line up against Poland
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Sports Mole takes an in-depth look at how Slovakia could line up for Monday's European Championship clash with Poland.

Slovakia get their Euro 2020 campaign up and running on Monday evening, when they meet Poland at St Petersburg's Krestovsky Stadium.

Coming into just their second European Championship since independence, Stefan Tarkovic's squad contains several veteran components, but also some emerging talents who may also feature in their opening Group E match.

This week, Tarkovic was pleased to receive clearance for veteran playmaker Marek Hamsik to return from his calf injury, sustained while on a short-term contract at IFK Goteburg at the end of last season.

The Falcons' captain will not be joined by long-time national skipper Martin Skrtel at these Euros, however, after Tarkovic failed to convince the ex-Liverpool centre-back to end his international retirement. Peter Pekarik will therefore start, after the squad's most experienced defender earned his 100th cap in last week's friendly against Bulgaria.

Only versatile Slavia Prague forward Ivan Schranz is set to be missing on Slovakia's opening night, as he suffered an unfortunate thigh injury while leading the line against Austria during their final warm-up friendly.

Former Norwich City man Ondrej Duda could therefore play as a false nine in Schranz's absence, with Lukas Haraslin and Robert Mak likeliest to start in support.

Twenty-one-year-old striker Robert Bozenik is set to feature from the bench after playing 16 times for Feyenoord this term, while teenage midfielder Tomas Suslov - also based in the Eredivisie, with Groningen - is an exciting possible second-half replacement.

Slovakia possible starting lineup: Dubravka; Pekarik, Satka, Skriniar, Hubocan; Kucka, Benes; Haraslin, Hamsik, Mak; Duda

> Click here to see how Poland could line up for Monday's Group E clash

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Thursday's key events

· Comeback queen and super-mum Helen Glover goes for her third Olympic gold alongside Polly Swann in the women's pair final (1.30am)
· There is also a medal on offer for GB pair Emily Craig and Imogen Grant in the lightweight women's double scull final (2.10am)

· As second-fastest qualifier for the final, Team GB's James Wilby is among the medal contenders in the men's 200m breaststroke (2.44am)
· Alys Thomas takes part in the women's 200m butterfly final, although he faces a difficult task to challenge for the medals (3.28am)
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· After Team GB's men narrowly missed out on a medal, the women get their campaign underway against the Russian Olympic Committee (3am) and New Zealand (10.30am)

· It is a Great Britain vs. Netherlands double-header, with the men up first in Pool B (4.15am)
· Most eyes will be on the women's showdown between the two nations, though, as Netherlands - the world's best team - look to gain revenge on GB for defeat in the 2016 Olympic final (11am)

· Mallory Franklin takes part in the women's canoe semi-final, and will hope to do enough to qualify for the final later in the day (6am-8.45am)

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