Netherlands vs Ukraine (UEFA EURO 2020)

It’s a race against time for influential Dutch centre-back Matthijs de Ligt, who started training again days before kick-off.

The 21-year-old had sustained a groin injury and if he’s unable to feature, then Netherlands manager Frank de Boer should retain Ajax duo Daley Blind and Jurrien Timber in a back-three alongside Stefan de Vrij with veteran goalkeeper Maarten Stekelnburg beneath the crossbar. Elsewhere in De Boer’s much talked about 3-5-2 formation, Davy Klaassen is vying for a spot in midfield but faces stiff competition in the guise of Marten de Roon, who started their final Euro 2020 warm-up game.

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If this game was taking place as originally scheduled a year ago, Ukraine boss Andriy Shevchenko would be dealing with a fixed starting lineup. Instead the former Ballon d’Or recipient is spoilt for choice across various positions. No place symbolises this newfound luxury than the question as to who starts in goal. Andriy Pyatov or Georgiy Bushchan could easily start against Oranje and no one will bat an eye. Illia Zabarnyi, Serhiy Kryvtsov and Mykola Matviyenko are potential starters in central defence but one will be disappointed. The same can be said for two wide players with Andriy Yarmolenko, Oleksandr Zubkov, Marlos and Viktor Tsygankov all pushing for a start on either flank.

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