• Analysis

Match Preview: Turkey vs Iceland

EURO 2020
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Turkey welcomes Iceland to the Turk Telekom Stadium in what might be a decisive European Qualifiers encounter on Thursday evening.

Turk Telekom Stadium in Istanbul will host Turkey and Iceland, as both sides head into the fixture with only one thing on their mind – to qualify for the following EURO 2020.

The home side indeed has the chance to book the place at the European Championship and all they have to do is avoid defeat when they face the Nordic visitors, tomorrow at 18:00 (CET).

The Crescent-Stars returned with a point from their trip to Paris last time out, drawing 1-1 with current world champions, France in Saint-Denis. They are currently sitting on top of Group H with 19 points and have a pretty comfortable four-point lead ahead of their next opponents with two games to go.

It is to be or not to be for Iceland, on the other hand, who defeated Andora 2-0 in their most recent outing in the European Qualifiers.

The Scandinavians have to beat Turkey in Istanbul if they want to keep their 2020 EURO hopes alive and also need to have a bit of fortune in the final round – defeat Moldavia and wait for the Turks to drop points in Andora in order to qualify at a major international tournament for the third time in a row.

Team news

Turkey will miss midfielder Irfan Can Kahveci due to injury, while Everton forward Cenk Tosun is ready to return in the starting XI.

Kaan Ayhan, who came off the bench to score the equalizer in France, is likely to start at center-back for the hosts ahead of Merih Demiral, who has made just one start for Juventus this season.

Experienced pair Aron Gunnarsson and Johann Berg Gudmundsson will not travel to Istanbul with Iceland’s squad, both of them ruled out through injuries.

All eyes are on Premier League star Gylfi Sigurdsson, who is expected to lead the visitors to vital victory at the Turk Telekom Stadium tomorrow evening.


The Scandinavians registered a 2-1 victory when the sides met each other in Reykjavic back in June, last summer.

Iceland have been winning at both half time and full time in their last 3 matches against Turkey in all competitions.

The Turks have actually won just two games from 11 encounters with Iceland across all competitions. Iceland won seven, while two of those games finished without a winner.

Turkey has the best defense in Group H, having conceded only three goals in eight EURO qualifiers outings. None of those goals came at home, as they have a goal difference of 8-0 from the games they’ve hosted.

Iceland, on the other hand, has conceded eight goals in three games on the road in their qualifying campaign, winning the three points only in Andora on March 22.