15 November 2019
Iceland have no margin for error as they travel to the Türk Telekom Stadium to take on Turkey knowing anything but a victory will end their hopes of finishing in the top two in the 2020 UEFA European Championship qualifying (ECQ) Group H.
The hosts are one point away from progressing from Group H, and avoiding failure here would see them qualify for next summer’s tournament. Sitting top of the section, level on points with France, the Crescent-Stars have won six of eight ECQ matches so far (D1, L1), with their sole defeat coming against Iceland on the road. In fact, it was the only game in the ongoing qualifying that saw Turkey concede over 1.5 match goals and trail at the halftime break. But, Şenol Güneş’s side has made no mistake at home so far (W4), winning each of their WCQ home matches without conceding a single goal. What’s more, Turkey have won all six of their home games since the turn of 2019, allowing just one goal across those matches, friendlies included.
Meanwhile, the visitors have to clinch three points here to keep their hopes of securing qualification alive, as they sit four points adrift of Turkey with two games to go. Erik Hamrén’s men have yet to play out a draw in the ongoing qualifying (W5, L3), with two of those defeats coming away from home. Except for a routine 2-0 triumph over Andorra, the ‘Strákarnir okkar’ have lost both of their remaining road matches, conceding precisely four goals in each while failing to find the net once. Just four of a total of 12 goals Iceland have scored in Group H so far have come on the road (33%). Moreover, they’ve won only one of eight away games since exiting the World Cup, friendlies included (D4, L4), with three of those losses seeing them draw a blank.
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