Nations League champions Portugal are looking for the win that keeps them bang in contention for another place in the finals, when they welcome Sweden to the Estadio Jose Alvalade on Wednesday night. The visitors, on the other hand, are in a battle to avoid relegation from the top tier of this competition.
Where and when: Estadio Jose Alvalade – 14 October, kick-off 19:45
Where you can see Portugal vs. Sweden: Sky Sports
Last time: Cristiano Ronaldo scored both of Portugal’s goals, as the Selecao beat Sweden 2-0 in Stockholm last month.
Portugal v Sweden Predictions and Preview
This is a fixture which has produced some thrilling entertainment in recent years, and we hope for more of the same this week. Sweden certainly have to go all-out for the win if they’re to take any degree of success from their Nations League campaign, while Portugal have their sights firmly set on retaining their crown won on home soil last summer.
The Selecao have had the upper hand in this fixture over the years, only losing one of the last 11 meetings between the countries. That 3-2 victory for Sweden in 2017 was in a friendly, with their most recent competitive fixture before last month Portugal’s dramatic 3-2 win in World Cup 2014 qualifying.
Ronaldo bagged a hat-trick that day in reply to a Zlatan Ibrahimovic brace, and the Juventus striker is still going strong today. He’s also backed up by a healthy supporting cast which includes the likes of Manchester United playmaker Bruno Fernandes, who has taken to the Premier League like a duck to water, as well as Bernardo Silva, Ruben Neves and Joao Felix.
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Portugal to win and BTTS
Portugal to win 3-2
Ronaldo to score first
It’s probably the deepest squad Fernando Santos has ever had during his six-year reign in charge of Portugal. The European champions are going to be in the hunt to retain their crown when Euro 2020 eventually takes place, and they are the clear favourites to pick up the win in these Portugal v Sweden predictions.
The Selecao began their Nations League title defence with a resounding 4-1 victory over World Cup finalists Croatia, before that 2-0 triumph over Sweden. They then warmed up for their double-header against world champions France and Sweden with a goalless draw against Spain.
Sweden, on the other hand, lost at home to France and Portugal in their first two Nations League fixtures, before beating Russia 2-1 away in their friendly on Thursday. Janne Andersson’s side are the underdogs in this game, meaning a draw would be seen as a positive result in their bid to beat the drop to League B.
One to watch for Portugal: Cristiano Ronaldo has scored seven goals in his last four games against Sweden, and the irrepressible forward is the favourite to continue his fine scoring run against the Blue and Yellow by netting the opener on Wednesday.
One to watch for Sweden: One of the men tasked with stopping Ronaldo will be Manchester United defender Victor Lindelof. The centre-back has come in for plenty of criticism in the early weeks of the new season, and if has a poor game here, Sweden will have no chance of a result.
Long shot: Two of the last three meetings between these countries have ended 3-2, with each team winning one of those. Portugal have the better record in this fixture though, a more talented side and home advantage. They’re the team you’d fancy to win 3-2 in this fixture, if that result is to be on the cards once more.