Sports Mole previews Saturday’s Nations League clash between Faroe Islands and Lithuania, including predictions, team news and possible line-ups.
After two defeats each in their opening UEFA Nations League Fasteners, something must give, though Faroe Islands and Lithuania head to head on Saturday.
The result in Torshavn could play a big role in deciding who is relegated from Group C1 after both sides have failed to score a single goal in the 2022 season so far.
After an unbeaten season in Group D1 of the 2020 Nations League, the Faroe Islands have earned an impressive promotion to the third tier of the competition ahead of the 2022 edition.
From today’s perspective, however, the quality leap on Saturday went a step too far for the hosts.
As mentioned, the Faroe Islands have lost each of their two opening games over the past week and have failed to score in either encounter.
A heavy 4-0 defeat against group favorites Turkey in Istanbul was to be expected at the start, but manager Hakan Ericson Expected more from him at Luxembourg on Tuesday evening.
The odds were slightly in their opponents’ favor anyway, but otherwise little could have gone wrong in the 1-0 defeat for Ericson’s men.
Rene Shaki Joensen Red in the middle of the second half for a professional foul as the last man before Gerson Rodrigues converted from the point for the visitors just seven minutes later.
Solvi Vatnhamar then became the second Faroe Islands player to receive his marching orders 10 minutes from the end of a miserable evening, but Ericson expects his side to get their Nations League campaign up and running when they host fellow contenders Lithuania in Torshavn on Saturday.
Meanwhile, as previously mentioned, Lithuania has also endured a disappointing opening week of its 2022 Nations League campaign.
Like the hosts at the weekend, Lithuania suffered two defeats without finding the net themselves.
First, Valdas Ivanauskas‘ side were defeated 2-0 at home to Luxembourg on Matchday 1 before being humiliated in a 6-0 loss to Turkey on Tuesday.
After being 2-0 down on a Dogukan Sinik After a brace in the first 14 minutes, Ivanauskas’ side had recovered well to hold the result for the rest of the first half but after that Serdar Dursun scored a third penalty before the hour mark, Lithuania collapsed late as pride and energy drained from their players.
As with the Faroe Islands, a much-improved performance and result will be sought on Saturday, with each side looking to the other as the perfect opponent in Group C1 to kick-start their campaign.
Promotion from Tier 3 was never a likely option with a highly talented Turkish side in the group, but avoiding relegation to League D will be the priority when these two struggling nations take the field here.
Faroe Islands Nations League Form:
Faroe Islands form (all competitions):
Form of the Lithuanian Nations League:
Lithuania form (all competitions):
Following their red cards last time out, Joensen and Solvi Vatnhamar will miss the Faroe Islands on Saturday.
The brother of the latter Gunnar Vatnhamarwill probably be accompanied by captain Hallo Hansson instead in midfield, who should drop down from his last role as a striker against Luxembourg.
With no obvious support for Joensen on the right, Gilly Rolansson is likely to fall deeper from its right role, with Mads Mikkelsen in the competition, earning only his third cap for his country in the wide role as a result.
Changes in the starting line-up are to be expected for the guests after Tuesday night’s win against Turkey.
Experienced defender Saulius Mikoliunas could be rested at right-back on Saturday after playing the full 90 minutes midweek, which would deny him his 99th cap for his country should he miss it.
Rolandas Barawykas should represent him in the back four while Augustina’s Klimavicius can certainly be rotated Karolis Laukzemis attack again.
After missing the opening game and having to settle for a substitute on Tuesday, Fyodor Cernych could compete here for what would be his 75th cap for Lithuania.
Faroe Islands possible starting line-up:
Nielsen; Rolantson, Faero, Askham, Davidsen; Mikkelsen, G. Vatnhamar, Hansson, M. Olsen; Johannesen, Kolsen
Lithuania possible starting line-up:
setkus; Baravykas, Satkus, Klimavicius, Barauskas; Slivka, megalaitis; Cernych, Golubickas, Novikovas; climate victim
We say: Faroe Islands – Lithuania 1-0
There are unlikely to be too many goals in Saturday’s Group C1 clash as both sides lack quality and confidence ahead of their clash.
However, we expect the Faroe Islands to just overtake their visitors with home advantage.
For a data analysis of the most likely outcomes, goal scores and more for this game, please click here.
Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com predict under 3.5 goals in this game. Click here to find out what else they predict for this game and for more of their football best tips.Under 3.5:Data