Greece put their unbeaten record in Group H on the line as they take on Estonia on Thursday evening, with Michael Skibbe’s side requiring a win in order to keep them above Bosnia and Herzegovina in the standings. Estonia’s chances of qualifying are perhaps already over, with the relative minnows having recorded juts one win throughout this stage of the competition.
World Cup 2018 Qualifying – Karaiskakis Stadium, Piraeus – Thursday 31st 2017 – 19:45 UK Time
Match Preview: Greece vs Estonia
With places at next year’s World Cup in Russia up for grabs, the pressure is on Greece to collect three points in front of their home support this week. With an encounter against group leaders Belgium taking place just a matter of days later, three points is a must if they are to have any chance of retaining second place in the standings come the end of the international break.
Greece Team News & Form
With three wins and three draws from their opening six Group H matches, Greece have found themselves in a strong position ahead of the remaining qualifying fixtures. The Euro 2004 winners have struggled to compete at the highest level over recent years, however Head Coach Skibbe looks to have now found a winning formula for the national team.
The manager has called up six uncapped players to his squad for upcoming matches, however experienced bodies such as Vasilis Torosidis, Kostas Mitroglou and Giannis Maniatis are likely to remain at the heart of their starting line-up against Estonia. Mitroglou was in fine form for Portuguese champions Benfica last season, with the striker having scored 13 goals for his country to date. Back in March, Greece earned a crucial point away in Belgium, having previously been held to a draw by Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Estonia Team News & Form
As for the visitors, with Estonia’s only win in Group H having come over minnows Gibraltar back in October last year, manager Martin Reim faces a substantial task in ensuring that his players come away with something from Thursday’s clash. Having lost to Belgium last time around, Estonia have chosen not to make any significant changes to their playing squad, with the usual suspects expected to line up against Greece. Their squad boasts four players that have won over 100 caps, with Liverpool defender Ragnar Klavan perhaps the most well-known. Meanwhile, young Fulham midfielder Mattias Kait will look to enhance his ever-growing reputation.
Head to Head
Greece and Estonia have met three times in the past, with the underdogs for Thursday’s clash still hunting a first win. Having won comfortably by two goals to nil in Estonia back in October, many are expecting a similarly easy ride for Greece this week.
Betting Odds and Predictions
Despite their status as the favourites, there are still a whole host of markets that can be utilised for those looking to place a bet on this match. Bookmakers 10Bet offer odds of 2/5 for Greece to earn three points against Estonia on Thursday, while the visitors can be backed at 8/1 at the same platform.
Meanwhile, backing Greece to keep a clean sheet is also recommended, with Ladbrokes offering odds of 8/15 for this market.
Top Betting Tip
Our top betting tip for this match is to bet on Greece to score over 2.5 goals, which can be found at odds of 11/4 at Ladbrokes.