Sandecja Nowy Sacz vs Legia Warsaw
Competition: Poland Ekstraklasa
Date: 2 December 2017
Kick-off: 20:30 CET
Up until early November, the only time Sandecja had lost by two goals, was at Legia Warsaw, early in the season, away from home, a game in which Sandecja made Legia suffer, despite what the final score suggests. Sandecja had lost other games as well, but never without looking what I have called them a dozen times already this season, “a super tough nut to break”. Things changed in that early November game at Wisla Krakow, where Sandecja lost 3-0, practically with their hands down, no matter if two of Wisla’s three goals came from the penalty spot. Last weekend, it happened again. Less than 15 minutes into the game at Arka Gdynia, Sandecja were 3-0 down(!). They lost the game 5-0, two of those five goals came, again, from the penalty spot, Arka’s first goal could have been offside, but… regardless, Sandecja looked poor, and it makes you wonder if… that’s it, if they’ve reached their limits, if they’ve run out of steam, at least in this first half of the season, before the long winter break. They finished last weekend sitting 14th in the table, but what’s alarming in their case is how they have been looking lately away from home, as if they’ve lost their “over my dead body” attitude.
Legia Warsaw traveled to Kielce last weekend to face Korona, having six wins in a row (including one in the Cup), and having kept a clean sheet in four of their last five Ekstraklasa matches. They were considered favorites to beat Korona, but I backed the hosts to earn at least a draw, and Legia ended up leaving Kielce empty-handed. It was one of those games that you wish they could go on for… 180 minutes, not “just” 90, with the ball going up and down practically non-stop. Last week I wrote about Hämäläinen’s football IQ, and the Finn did an awesome job delivering once again for Legia, setting up the first goal to Niezgoda with an absolutely spotless cross, and scoring Legia’s second himself, despite getting pushed by Rymaniak. He wasn’t enough though, Legia’s two fantastic counterattacks that led to their two goals were not enough, as Korona played their usual “attack-attack-attack” game, scoring three times, and missing another half a dozen great opportunities (Legia’s goalkeeper, Malarz, saved a lot, even though he could have done a better job in Korona’s second goal). Midweek, Legia beat Bytovia Bytów 4-2 at home, in a Cup match, qualifying for the semis. Their lineup was super alternative, with practically all regulars getting rested. Legia finished last weekend in second, having gotten… leapfrogged by Gornik Zabrze.
Previous five matches:
Arka Gdynia vs Sandecja Nowy Sacz 5-0
Sandecja Nowy Sacz vs Lech Poznan 0-0
Wisla Krakow vs Sandecja Nowy Sacz 3-0
Sandecja Nowy Sacz vs Gornik Zabrze 1-2
Sandecja Nowy Sacz vs Cracovia Krakow 1-1
Legia Warsaw vs Bytovia Bytów 4-2
Korona Kielce vs Legia Warsaw 3-2
Legia Warsaw vs Gornik Zabrze 1-0
Pogon Szczecin vs Legia Warsaw 1-3
Legia Warsaw vs Arka Gdynia 2-0
Sandecja’s next game is again at home, next Friday, versus Jagiellonia Bialystok. A day later, Legia will be hosting Nieciecza (both Poland Ekstraklasa matches).
Sandecja Nowy Sacz vs Legia Warsaw: Head to head Stats
Sandecja have never hosted Legia before.
Sandecja Nowy Sacz vs Legia Warsaw: Prediction
Earlier in the season, when Sandecja’s defence looked like an impenetrable wall, and Legia were dropping points like crazy, I would have backed the Nowy Sacz side to get something from this game. Now, no.
Sandecja Nowy Sacz vs Legia Warsaw: Betting Tips
A simple Legia win pays 1.80, which may be enough for some of you. It’s expected to be a rather low-score game, but personally, for more than 1.80, I would gamble with Legia and over 2.5 combined goals, at 3.00 betting odds, counting on the heavy pitch to… play tricks to both teams. On a side note, I’ll be surprised if one of those three – minimum – goals is not scored from the penalty spot.
More Poland Ekstraklasa betting tips and match previews: