FOCUS ON PAIDE LINNAMEESKOND (7/10, 18p)
The 17-0 win in the Estonian Cup game against non-league side was more of a training game than a competitive one. Rooba brought to Paide (most of the team trains in Tallinn) just the starting XI and goalkeeper Siim-Sten Palm returning from holidays in Brazil. The latter was protagonist as field player with a brace (!) The game was also a chance to see back on the pitch the Nigerian striker Uwa who also scored a goal. Whether he will field the number 7 or not might be a last-minute decision. Rooba had already to make go without a pure striker for a long while, he might well opt to start Rõivassep in the usual 4-2-3-1 and then switch him with Uwa during the game. The game in Tallinn at season's debut represented a shock for the Premium Liiga (0-1 win with Atie Said, now gone, scoring the three-point winner), Paide might hope to exploit Levadia's fatigue due to the trip to San Marino and an additional 90', in order to place another surprising result. Against this Levadia (4 wins in a row and unbeaten since the faux pas against Paide) even a draw would represent a great achievement for a team who has put together 4 losses in the last four games.
All the squad is available except Andre Mägi, still busy with his work duties as Erwin Kõll.
Martin Ustaal and Markus Holst will not be usable as their playing rights belong to Levadia and a clause in their loan contracts does not allow them to be fielded against their club of origin.
Karl Palatu and Kaspar Kaldoja are one card away from suspension.
Key man: Rasmus Tomson
The 28-year-old attacking midfielder can be the one posing the threat to Levadia's solid back four (only three goals suffered and Smiśko holding the Premium Liiga clean sheet record, 1076 minutes without suffering a goal) as his run-in's can create troubles and compel Levadia's midfield to double team. Tomson in Paide's topscorer with 6 nettings.
FOCUS ON LEVADIA (2/10 +46, 38p)
The away trip to San Marino was more complicated than expected. Contrary to the training game in the Estonian Cup against 6th tier side, Teever&Co. managed to miss a plenty of chances to come back from the Italian boot with a richer result. Instead, they have to make go with a tiny 1-0 obtained in injury time thanks to a reserve player (Heiko Tamm) finish. Probably it will be enough to get rid of the San Marino Champions already on Tuesday in Kadriorg. Meanwhile the trip to Paide will have to be faced with maximum focus. It is this part of the seasons when top clubs engaged in European campaign can easily lose it and concede points to opponents and title-fight rivals, ask Nõmme Kalju from last season. Kristal will try to keep the focus high in order not make the same mistake. After the MOTM performance of Montanari (La Fiorita goalkeeper) he will hope Niinepuu will be more lenient. At the same time Ivanov and Teever need to show the same sharpness seen in games against the minnowest of the minnows.
Omar El-Hussieny is still affected by a calf injury.
He might be spared this game to be fielded against La Fiorita on Tuesday. Unless the plan is a long-term one and we will see him against Sparta Prague shall Levadia pass the leg (the first game will be on the 15th/16th of July). After the winner in San Marino, Kristal might entrust him the left flank and bring Subbotin back to the right instead of using the jolly Raudsepp out of role.
Ivanov, Artjunin and Vukobratovic are all one card away from suspension with the latter about to get his second one this season.
Key man: Igor Subbotin
He is in super shape. Also against La Fiorita, starting on the left flank (he prefers the right), he was the best of Levadia as posed an endless threat to the Sammarinese right back with dribblings, supplied crosses and run-ins. He will require a lot of attention and double-teaming. Very good chances for Igor to increase his seasonal tally of 13 goals.
Limiting Rasmus Tomson might be easier than limiting Igor Subbotin if Rooba will keep him in the trequartista position where Vukobratovic will drop to control the Paide nr. 20. This will be the key of the game for both coaches. However, Rooba might bring Tomson back to right-flank position in order to make things harder for Pikk who will be more concerned with covering than with overlapping Subbotin.
PAIDE LINNAMEESKOND VS. LEVADIA HEAD-TO-HEAD
(last 6 Premium Liiga Matches via WhoScored.com)
Paide’s wins: 1
Levadia's wins: 5
Goals scored by Paide: 6
Goals scored by Levadia: 11
Most prolific Premium Liiga scorer(s) in Paide's rows: Rasmus Tomson (MF) 39 goals
Most prolific Premium Liiga scorer(s) in Levadia's rows: Ingemar Teever (DMF) 120 goals
ODDS (the figures may be subject to variation)
More odds about this game here by
THE REFEREES SQUAD
(statistics courtesy of Heigo Niilop)
The match director will be Elar Tarkus, 13 games in Premium Liiga.
He has showed 34 yellow cards (2,61 per game). He showed a red card once for double booking and once straight.
Maikel Mikson and Riivo Stolts will be the linemes with Siim Rinken on the touchline.