#360fans: Portugal vs Austria – UAE fans preview, players to watch & prediction

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
Ronaldo (l) and Alaba will be key for their sides.

To gain an insight into the mindset of the fans we asked UAE fans to share with us their predictions and players to watch.

Do you agree or have they missed the mark? Share with us your thoughts and predictions by commenting below, using #360fans on Twitter or getting in touch via Facebook.

PORUGAL – Fracisco Alves (Architect, Dubai)

After a somewhat disappointing first match (though let us give the deserved credit to a well-organised and solid Icelandic team), Portugal will need to step up their performance in order to keep alive any hope of going through the group stage. Most of all, it will depend on the willingness and fortunes in front of goal of Cristiano Ronaldo to inspire the team. More than once he has put his super-ego above his team’s needs, but this time he will need to transform his selfishness in favour of a collective goal.

Due to a three-day gap between matches, coach Fernando Santos may be forced to make some changes to the starting line-up, and I would expect Cedric Soares to replace Vieirinha who was partly to blame for the goal we conceded against Iceland. Renato Sanches would be a welcome, galvanising addition to the midfield and Ricardo Quaresma would also freshen up our attack.

Coming into this one on the back of an even more surprising defeat against Hungary, Austria will also be desperate to secure all three points. I’m expecting a much more focused performance in attack from the Austrians but the urge to score can leave some space in behind for the Portuguese counter-attack. Overall, I’m hoping for an open match from both teams.

PREDICTION: Portugal 2 – 1 Austria

LIKELY PORTUGAL XI: Rui Patricio; Cedric Soares, Pepe, Ricardo Carvalho, Raphael Guerreiro; Danilo, Joao Moutinho, Joao Mario, Renato Sanches; Ricardo Quaresma, Cristiano Ronaldo.

PORTUGAL PLAYER TO WATCH: Cristiano Ronaldo – He will always be in the spotlight for Portugal, asked to prove his value as a leader. He has done it before and can do it again. The ‘haters’ will trash him if he keeps up the passive aggressive attitude he showed  against Iceland. For the beauty of the game, let’s hope for an inspired performance.

AUSTRIA PLAYER TO FEAR: Marko Arnautovic – With 11 goals and six assists in the 2015-16 Premier League, Stoke City’s forward has been Austria’s major attacking reference and has the necessary strength and talent to beat Portugal’s defence. If the connection between Christian Fuchs and David Alaba goes well, I would expect great supply from the left wing.

WHERE TO WATCH THE GAME: Barasti Beach Bar

AUSTRIA – Thomas Lattacher (Assistant Product Manager, Dubai)

The defeat to Hungary has really shaken Austria, who were very confident of getting a result against their old rivals. The manner of the loss was a huge shock but we must now pick ourselves up for the challenge of a Portuguese side who also suffered an upset in their first game, drawing 1-1 with Iceland.

A point against Portugal really is the minimum requirement but we will have to do it without a couple of important players.  The red card for defender Aleksander Dragovic will certainly hurt us but not as much as the injury to our playmaker Zlatko Junuzovic. Hopefully their replacements (probably Sebastian Prodl for Dragovic and Alessandro Schopf for Junuzovic) can fill the void.

PREDICTION: Portugal 1-1 Austria

LIKELY AUSTRIA XI: Almer; Klein, Prodl, Hinteregger, Fuchs; Alaba, Baumgartlinger; Harnik, Schopf, Arnautovic; Janko.

AUSTRIA PLAYER TO WATCH: David Alaba – With Zlatko Junuzovic missing, Alaba is going to have much more opportunity to be part of Austria’s attack. He should leave more of the defensive work to Julian Baumgartlinger and then Austria can benefit from his copious attacking talents.

PORTUGAL PLAYER TO FEAR: Cristiano Ronaldo – They don’t come much scarier! Iceland did a great job of keeping him quiet and Austria should follow suit. Not letting him pick up the ball and run at the defence will be crucial and he will also be dangerous from every free-kick near the box.

WHERE TO WATCH THE GAME: ON42 at the Media One Hotel – it’s been rocking so far.

Most popular

#360fans: Iceland vs Hungary – UAE fans preview

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
Use #360fans to share your thoughts.

To gain an insight into the mindset of the fans we asked UAE fans to share with us their predictions and players to watch.

Do you agree or have they missed the mark? Share with us your thoughts and predictions by commenting below, using #360fans on Twitter or getting in touch via Facebook.

ICELAND – Sæmundur St. Magnusson (Private Client Advisor, Dubai)

The game against Portugal was more than I, or any Iceland fan, could have hoped for. There are only 100 professional Icelandic football players from which to choose a national team – and those boys picked did an unbelievable job in Saint Etienne.

There are no injuries to report ahead of a game against Hungary that Iceland should feel confident of winning. If we could keep Cristiano Ronaldo at bay surely we can stop Hungary’s strikers from scoring, can’t we?

One major concern is fatigue. Our players left everything out on the pitch against Portugal and many will surely be feeling physically tired.

Still, a win could be enough to get Iceland through to the last-16 of the European Championship – that thought alone should be enough to inspire the players in Marseille.

PREDICTION: Hungary 0-1 Iceland

LIKELY ICELAND XI: Halldorsson; Skulason, Arnason, Sigurdsson, Sævarsson; Bjarnason, Gunnarsson, Sigurdsson, Gudmundsson; Bödvarsson, Sigþorsson.

ICELAND PLAYER TO WATCH: Eidur Gudjohnsen – Portugal was a different kind of game so Gudjohnsen did not get a chance to come on as a substitute. Against Hungary though, I’m tipping him to come off the bench and score the winner, which would be fitting for arguably the greatest player to have pulled on an Iceland jersey.

HUNGARY PLAYER TO FEAR: Balázs Dzsudzsák – He is the star of the national team, whose fearless running could prove very dangerous for Iceland’s defenders.

WHERE TO WATCH THE GAME: Kickers Sport Bar at Dubai Sports City.

HUNGARY – Viktor Jemeljanov (Dubai)

Hungarians are still pinching themselves after our incredible result against Austria. What a joy it was to watch the 2-0 victory, our first win at a major international tournament since beating Canada by that scoreline 30 years ago at the 1986 World Cup.

We can only hope that every team we play underestimates us as Hungary did, though we have to be VERY careful with our next opponent, who also got an unbelievable result against Portugal last time out. For once, we probably find ourselves as favourites – though I’m sure Iceland will be more adventurous than they were against Portugal.

In terms of Hungary injury news, one of our key players is out. Right-back Attila Fiola misses this one after suffering an injury against Austria, with Barnabas Bese most likely to replace him. A win for either side will likely secure their place in the last-16 so there is an awful lot at stake. The last – and only time – we played Iceland was a 4-0 friendly victory in Budapest back in 2011.  A repeat of that in Marseille would do just fine, thanks.

PREDICTION: Hungary 2-1 Iceland

LIKELY HUNGARY XI: Kiraly; Fiola, Guzmics, Lang, Kadar; Nemeth, Nagy, Kleinhesiler, Stieber; Dzsudzsak; Szalai

HUNGARY PLAYER TO WATCH: Balázs Dzsudzsák – Our tricky winger played well against Austria and has all the tools necessary to break down Iceland’s defence.

ICELAND PLAYER TO FEAR: Eidur Gudjohnsen – The former Chelsea and Barcelona striker didn’t feature against Portugal but I would expect him to play some part against Hungary. Despite his advancing years, he is still a dangerous marksman.  

WHERE TO WATCH: Barasti Beach Stadium

Most popular

#360fans – Belgium vs Ireland – Euro 2016 UAE preview

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
Big threats: Lukaku and Long.

Ahead of their Group E clash on Saturday, Belgium and Ireland UAE-based fans give their verdict on the game.

To gain an insight into the mindset of the fans we asked UAE fans to share with us their predictions and players to watch.

Do you agree or have they missed the mark? Share with us your thoughts and predictions by commenting below, using #360fans on Twitter or getting in touch via Facebook.

BELGIUM – Herwig Devolder (freight forwarder, Dubai)

It was a very disappointing team performance against Italy; a lack of inspiration, grit and willingness to win.

Besides Thibaut Courtois, none of the players played well. We must change things up and Kevin De Bruyne needs to play in the number ten role with Yannick Carrasco and Eden Hazard on the wings.

At right-back, I’d also bring in Thomas Meunier, he is a much more attacking option than Laurent Ciman.

PREDICTION: Belgium 3-1 Republic of Ireland.

BELGIUM PLAYER TO WATCH: Kevin De Bruyne. After a weak outing against Italy, hope to see an outstanding performance.

IRELAND PLAYER TO FEAR: Shane Long. Just a tremendous striker.

WHERE TO WATCH THE GAME: Belgian Beer Cafes in Dubai and Abu Dhabi always make for a good spot.

IRELAND Stephen Fleming (teacher, Dubai)

Ireland are feeling both optimistic and pessimistic after a fairly impressive showing against Sweden.

They outplayed the Swedes but once they scored there seemed to be a hesitation to their play.

While Belgium have the big names they can’t seem to gel as a unit, but they do have match-winners that could turn this contest on its head.

PREDICTION: Belgium 1-1 Republic of Ireland

IRELAND PLAYER TO WATCH: Wes Hoolahan. There’s a reason he’s being called Leo Wessi at home after Monday. He could be the creative spark we need.

BELGIUM PLAYER TO FEAR: Kevin De Bruyne is one man that Ireland will have to watch as his stock continues to rise.

WHERE TO WATCH THE GAME: McGettigans in JLT was hopping on Monday, should be again.

Most popular