Euro 2012: Sweden vs Ukraine prediction

The wait is almost over. Within 24 hours the first game of Sweden’s Euro 2012 campaign will be over and we will finally know the answer to the question that has threatened to overshadow the preparations since May 12: will Johan Elmander be fit to lead the line?

The answer appears to be positive with Erik Hamrén commenting on Sunday that: “He’s all right to play. It feels really, really good. We have no injuries.”

With Elmander playing, we could see Rasmus Elm move inside and play a deep-lying playmaker role alongside Kim Källström, with Anders Svensson unluckily missing out. Should this happen then Ola Toivonen will occupy the left flank of Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Zlatan, the captain, will be central to Swedish hopes and should carry his fine club form into the tournament with the freedom to drive Sweden forward within their new attacking philosophy.  Ukraine may very well struggle to cope with the space that Zlatan will find and the short, sharp passing game that defines this new era of Swedish football, and this will determine the final score.

Match prediction: Sweden 2 Ukraine 1.

If you think you can predict better than this then join in with Arsenal legend Ian Wright and his Absolute Radio show: Rock and Roll Football. Simply use the Twitter hashtag #WrightorWrong and listen to the show. Other predictions from guests and fromn Wrighty himself can be found on the Absolute Radio website.

Andy Hudson’s pre-match preview can be found on Mirror Football. You can follow Andy on Twitter.

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