The 2018 World Cup qualifiers come to a close on Tuesday in Europe, South America, and North America with some great names battling to win tickets to the Mundial. Here are three matches that should test your blood pressure:
Portugal v Switzerland @Benfica Stadium @7:45pm on Oct 10
The last time Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal beat the Swiss was 24 years ago! The encounter in Lisbon on Tuesday would determine who takes the top spot in Group B with the Portuguese boasting the better goals difference. Portugal are expected to pick all three points away to Andorra on Friday while Switzerland should do same at home to Hungary, which would mean going into that Tuesday match; Switzerland would be on 27 points and Portugal on 24 – so it is then the winner takes all in Lisbon.
Current Form: Portugal [W-W-W-L-W; Switzerland [W-W-W-W-W]
Head to head
06/09/16 WQE Switzerland 2 – 0 Portugal
15/06/08 EUC Switzerland 2 – 0 Portugal
13/10/93 WQE Portugal 1 – 0 Switzerland
31/03/93 WQE Switzerland 1 – 1 Portugal
19/09/89 WQE Switzerland 1 – 2 Portugal
Prediction: Portugal 2-1 Switzerland
Ecuador v Argentina @ Estadio Atahualpa @00:30am on Oct 11
Lionel Messi and Argentina no longer have their fate in their own hands as only a draw between Colombia and Peru and a win for the Argentines would guarantee a World Cup place. If Peru wins, they will take the fourth spot; if Colombia wins, they will take fourth spot and Argentina, with a win in Quito will take fifth place and qualify for the playoffs.
Current Form: Ecuador [L-L-L-W-W]; Argentina [D-D-D-W-W]
Head to head
09/10/15 WQS Argentina 0 – 2 Ecuador
01/04/15 FRI Argentina 2 – 1 Ecuador
16/11/13 FRI Ecuador 0 – 0 Argentina
11/06/13 WQS Ecuador 1 – 1 Argentina
02/06/12 WQS Argentina 4 – 0 Ecuador
Prediction: Ecuador 1-2 Argentina
Netherlands v Sweden @Amsterdam ArenA @7:45pm on Oct 10
The Oranje need to beat the Swedes 7-0 to stand any chance of making the playoffs – which is what makes this match very intriguing. Will Dick Advocaat go all out to get the needed goals with a 3-2-5 formation [throwing the kitchen sink] or ill the match becomes an anti-climax?
The Netherlands have been poor for the last three years and are almost sure to miss out on the trip to Russia. But this would be a good watch as it has always been tight between these two countries!
Current Form: Netherlands [W-W-L-W-W]; Sweden [W-W—L-D-W]
Head to head
06/09/16 WQE Sweden 1 – 1 Netherlands
11/10/11 ECQ Sweden 3 – 2 Netherlands
12/10/10 ECQ Netherlands 4 – 1 Sweden
19/11/08 FRI Netherlands 3 – 1 Sweden
18/08/04 FRI Sweden 2 – 2 Netherlands
Prediction: Netherlands 3-1 Sweden