Iceland vs Hungary – Group F – 5pm (BBC) – 18.06.16 – Stade Velodrome, MarseilleI don’t think anybody could have predicted that when Iceland and Hungary had to play each other they would be sitting in second and first place of Group F, respectively.
Iceland’s sensational first ever game, goal and point at a major tournament, in which they came from behind to draw 1-1 with Portugal, won them the hearts of everyone watching – not least because of how angry it made Cristiano Ronaldo.
Expected to crash and burn, Iceland now have no reason to look behind them and, with arguably the hardest group game out of the way, can genuinely push on for potential qualification.
Hungary also upset the odds when they thumped a 10-man Austria 2-0, making Group F possibly the most open and exciting of all of them.
This game would have been the one both managers would have marked out as ‘winnable’ and if Hungary do go on and win they will guarantee qualification for the next round for the first time since 1972.
A win for Iceland would open the group up even more and possibly even see Austria knocked out.
A real underdog story for both sides and, regardless of the end result, both teams can be proud of what they have achieved.
Expect an open game with plenty of chances as both sides go for it.
Recommendation: Both teams to score at 2.00
- Hungary have beaten Iceland in five successive matches coming into this fixture. Iceland’s last victory was in June 1995
- There have been 14 goals in the last three encounters between Iceland and Hungary, an average of 4.7 per game.
- Iceland and Hungary have faced each other 10 times previously, but none of these games has ended as a draw
- Iceland have only lost once across their last seven competitive matches
- Iceland had the lowest possession of any side during the first round of group games
- Hannes Thór Halldórsson (Iceland) made eight saves in the match against Portugal; the most of any player in a EURO finals match since Joe Hart v Italy in 2012
- Zoltán Gera has scored three goals in two appearances against Iceland.
- Gera made more tackles than any other player over the first round of group matches (seven against Austria).