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Memphis Depay scares the Latvian defense
Free Euro 2020 soccer tips, best bets and analysis for Netherlands vs Ukraine in Group C on Sunday.
Where to look
Live on ITV, 8 p.m. Sunday
Memphis Depay marks the first
1pt 9-2 BoyleSport
The Dutch master has scored 11 goals in his last 11 games for club and country and his individual talent may be what is needed to break the deadlock in Amsterdam.
Captain Virgil van Dijk misses the tournament with injury, while Donny van de Beek was forced to retire last week. Matthijs de Ligt has also been sent off by manager Frank de Boer.
Viktor Tsygankov has missed Ukraine’s last two friendlies and needs to be assessed.
Seven long years have passed since the Netherlands last felt the buzz of a major tournament and their comeback at Euro 2020 will be supported by home support against Ukraine.
The Dutch failed to qualify for Euro 2016 in France and also missed the World Cup cup in Russia two years later, so they will be eager to make up for lost time.
The Netherlands are one of six teams with the added incentive of playing all three group games at home and expectations have been raised after being drawn into one of the softer sections.
But if the home advantage and a favorable road are positive, the Dutch are launching into the battle without the direction of Virgil van Dijk, injured, and doubts remain about the abilities of manager Frank de Boer.
The Oranje have made enormous progress under Ronald Koeman, but that progress was halted when he was brought back to club management by Barcelona and replaced by De Boer.
The Netherlands have won just five of their 11 games since De Boer took the lead and March’s 4-2 loss to Turkey in World Cup qualifying exposed their defensive vulnerabilities without Van Dijk.
While De Boer has yet to pick his favorite team and Juventus center-back Matthijs de Ligt is also ruled out, there is no rush to back them at a reduced price.
Ukraine are a unit that has improved a lot and managed to qualify, being unbeaten in eight games and leading a section that includes Portugal and Serbia.
Andriy Shevchenko’s side have had mixed success since, but they recorded a Nations League victory over Spain and a draw in World Cup qualifying in France since mid-October, and is therefore certainly capable of causing problems in the counterattack.
But while the Dutch may not have it their way, they have word class operators in advanced positions – none are more influential than Memphis Depay.
Lyon’s top scorer has scored 20 times in 37 Ligue 1 games this season, his efforts only eclipsed by Kylian Mbappe, and he looked sharp in his final preparations for Euro 2020.
The 27-year-old, who will be sure to be, scored a brace in the 2-2 draw with Scotland earlier this month before opening the scoring in the 3-0 win over Georgia.
The Netherlands have conceded eight of their last 12 international matches.
Penalty shooter Memphis depay
Free kick assistant Memphis depay
Aerial threat set-piece Wout Weghorst
Card magnet Martin de Roon
Penalty shooter Ruslan Malinovskyi
Free kick assistant Viktor Tsyhankov
Aerial threat set-piece Roman Yaremchuk
Card magnet Serhiy sydortchuk
Place Johan Cruijff Arena, Amsterdam
Fans allowed 12,000
Time zone BST +1 hour
Time Sunny, max 22C
FIFA rankings Netherlands (16), Ukraine (24)
Both teams score
The Netherlands have first-class options in the advanced areas, but they look much weaker defensively, especially given injuries to Virgil van Dijk and Matthijs de Ligt. A young Ukrainian team should have its moments.
Memphis Depay will score anytime
Depay’s reputation continues to grow and the dynamic Dutchman, who has scored seven goals in as many games for his country, could illustrate why with another victorious performance.
More than 1.5 Ukraine cards
Andriy Shevchenko’s side have collected 13 cards in their eight European Championship qualifiers, and they have also collected six in March’s two competitive matches with Finland and Kazakhstan.
The triple pays 11-2 with Bet365.
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FIRST PUBLISHED 3:31 PM, JUNE 12, 2021