WORLD CUP QUALIFICATION
AUSTRIA - SERBIA
Austria are the most frustrating of nations, after opening their campaign with a 3-1 home win over a disappointing French team, which ignited hopes of qualification. They then went on to collect just a single point from away starts against Lithuania and the Faroe Islands. Serbia have a very talented squad on paper and are traditionally strong defensively, recently they have thrown off the shackles and adopted a more attacking approach, under coach Radomir Antic, impressing in a big win over Lithuania. Where Jovanovic and Stankovic, back in his favoured position, both put in eye catching performances.
They are likely to start with the following line up: Stojkovic(Sporting Lisbon) - Ivanovic(Chelsea), Vidic(Manchester United), Krstajic(Schalke 04), Obradovic(Partizan) - Krasic(CSKA Moscow), Stankovic(Inter Milan), Milijas(Red Star), Jovanovic(Standard Liege) - Zigic(Valencia), Lazovic(PSV Eindhoven).
The only change from the weekend being Krstajic in for Dragutinovic. Their only group loss came in a 2-1 defeat in Paris, where they took the game to the French early, despite losing Stankovic to injury after just five minutes and created a number of goalscoring chances. A similar positive approach this evening, could see them open up a five point lead over the French, at the top of Group 7.
5 points Serbia -1/4 ball 2.10 asian line.
BOSNIA- HERZEGOVINA - ARMENIA
Hosts have plenty of attacking options and put seven past Estonia in their last home start. They also led 1-0 away to Turkey at the weekend, before conceding two second half goals and losing narrowly. Armenia have yet to collect a point , or even to score a goal in their three starts, but have started with a difficult run of fixtures and are not as bad as their bare results might suggest. I certainly feel that they might have some joy against a severely weakened home defence, that was already giving cause for concern, before losing both central defenders. The Bosnian FA, who are always accused locally, of having another agenda, have made some very strange and inexperienced call ups as replacements and I believe that this back line will struggle to keep a clean sheet. Therefore, I am taking the "over", I have seen in a few places, odds against for the visitors to score, it is, at the moment, not freely available enough for me to put up as a selection, but that is also a viable option.
6 points "over" 2.5 goals 1.93 asian line.