After losing all the chances for European football, coach Puštov finds it hard to motivate his players and they keep on playing hot and cold. Levadia, on the other hand, are on the verge of clinching the title as this is their last match against a top 5 opponent. However, we have seen many times before that Infonet players can play under pressure and it will be a big chance for them to see what they are capable of and if they can challenge for higher positions next season.
Focus on FC Infonet (5/10, 57pts)
The team of Infonet is in the golden mid-table position as they are 25 points ahead of the 6th position Paide, but also 13 points behind 4th place Sillamäe. That is why, as we mentioned before, it will be very difficult for the coach to motivate his players, as they have absolutely nothing to fight for. However, against them they have the reigning champions and current leaders, Levadia, and that is a motivation enough itself for any team to give their best. After easily beating Jõhvi in the previous round, when coach Puštov managed to rest some of his main players, they went on to lose to Sillamäe on penalties in the Estonian Cup and even though they were eliminated, they showed themselves in a good light and we can expect to see a team very similar to that one against Levadia as well.
Key-man: Albert Taar
The 24-year old attacking midfielder has shown excellent skills since joining the club and in the absence of Valov we might expect to see him taking over responsibility to lead his team to a good result. His creativity and explosiveness going forward will certainly cause Levadia’s defenders a lot of trouble and it won’t be a surprise if we see his name on the scoring list.
Injuries and suspensions
Nahk is absent for a longer time, while Oleg Valov will be sidelined due to suspension. The rest of the squad is available for selection.
Focus on FC Levadia (1/10, 78pts)
Marko Kristal’s squad made the main step towards the title beating FC Flora at A.Le Coq Arena last weekend and now they are five points clear at the top of the table with three games left and practically this should be their last „tough“ match as they are facing Narva and Jõhvi in the last two rounds. We mentioned before that coach Kristal besides all the troubles with the squad (injuries, suspensions), wisely used his rotation throughout the season and the result is great. Against Infonet the main aim will be not to lose and as we saw in the match with Flora, solid defense will be key to everything. That is why, we can expect to see a team very similar to the one from last week.
Injuries and suspensions
Besides Rättel and Jahhimovitš, coach Kristal can not count on Raudsepp. The rest of the squad is available for selection.
Key-man: Roman Smiško
The captain will certainly be tested many times by Manucho and co. but as he has shown many times before, he is one of the main reasons why Levadia is the team with least conceded goals in Premium Liiga. If he continues his fine form there is no doubt that the title could be clinched already this weekend.
A battle between 4-2-3-1 and 4-4-2 formations. It is clear that Levadia will go not to lose the game, but as we have seen many times this season they are extremely dangerous on the counter and down the flanks and Infonet’s defenders will have an awfully difficult job containing them. On the other side, the return of Vukobratovic and Dmitrijev means that Antonov can be utilized in a different position without endangering the defensive line up. The suspension of Valov is also a big minus for the hosts.
Infonet’s wins: 1
Levadia’s wins: 5
Goals scored by Infonet: 3
Goals scored by Levadia: 16
Most prolific Premium Liiga scorer(s) in Infonet's rows: Konstantin Nahk (DM) 113 goals
Most prolific Premium Liiga scorer(s) in Levadia's rows: Ingemar Teever (FW) 127 goals
ODDS (the figures may be subject to variation)
THE REFEREES SQUAD
(statistics courtesy of Heigo Niilop)
The match will be conducted by the experienced Eiko Saar who already has 197 games in Premium Liiga in which he has shown 621 yellow cards and 46 red cards. Out of the red ones, 21 have been for a second warning during the match and 25 straight red cards.
Info about the match
The match will be played on Friday, October 24 at the Sportland Arena. Kick off at 19:00. Ticket costs 5 eur. If you attend the FB event (here) you will have to pay 3 eur. Youngsters under 16 can follow the match free of charge.
The game will also be streamed on ERR Sport