Spain will be looking to keep the pressure on Sweden when they travel to face Greece in World Cup 2022 Qualifying Group B on Thursday evening.
Luis Enrique’s side most recently saw off Kosovo 2-0 to cement their second-placed position, while the hosts went down 2-0 to Sweden to leave their qualification hopes hanging by a thread.
Greece can no longer catch Sweden and are therefore fighting for their right to grab the second spot ahead of Spain and a place in the playoffs. However, they currently sit four points behind of La Roja. Anything less than a win here will see them out of contention.
Spain sit two points behind the group leaders, Sweden, and even if Luis Enrique’s side suffer a calamitous collapse and drop out of the top two, their Nations League ranking will still see them go through to the playoffs.
Greece have two suspensions to deal with for this clash. Pantelis Chatzidiakos saw red against Sweden, while captain Anastasios Bakasetas picked up his second qualification booking in that loss.
With Dinos Mavropanos also not involved in November’s fixtures, manager John Van ‘t Schip could look to the uncapped Dimitris Goutas. The centre-back has netted four goals in this season’s Super Lig already.
Petros Mantalos is likely to deputise in the number 10 position, as Bakasetas serves his suspension, while Kostas Tsimikas may also be required as an emergency centre-back in the hosts’ back three.
Meanwhile, Spain have lost Ferran Torres to a metatarsal fracture sustained during the Nations League Finals. The Manchester City man is one of several forwards who will be watching from home, alongside Ansu Fati, Gerard Moreno, Yeremi Pino, and Mikel Oyarzabal.
Eric Garcia has also been forced to pull out through injury, as Enrique works around a worrying list of absentees, but Alvaro Morata is back fit and ready to lead the attack, with support from Pablo Sarabia and Dani Olmo.
Pau Torres and Aymeric Laporte should team up in defence with Garcia out, while Unai Simon is expected to take his place in goal, ahead of David de Gea.
Our prediction is 2-0 to Spain. Despite their injuries they should still have too much firepower for Greece.