Hi guys! Haven't been here for a while, but it's WC so I've decided to drop by and give you some insight into the glorious Polish team ;) It may help you with your predictions for it.
Our attitude is that we haven't come here to lose to teams like Senegal or Columbia (with all respect). Anything other than 9 points will be somewhat disappointing. Not finishing first will be a huge one. I honestly think that should we play England later on, we'll be the heavy favourites and if Belgium keeps playing as bad as they did yesterday (what were they doingthe first half?!), they also shouldn't be much of a challenge.
The team played in all manner of tactics, including 1, 2 and 3 strikers 3 and 4 defenders. So we can expect some craziness for periods of time and more offensive game than 2 years ago.
Lewandowski is on fire. Unlike 2 years ago, when he had a bad Euro after a very exhausting season, this time you can tell that the owners of Bayern made the call to trade him this offseason a long time ago and they hope he drives the price up on the World Cup. They've been saving him, he played limited minutes and wasn't overutilised, I have to give them credit - they took great care of him this time. This means no excuses for him, but in the last games he's been fresh and scorching hot. Having seen Neymar in the first game I think RL9 is the third best forward in the world right now. He better prove it this year.
The team has very high morale and it's a true team - worth more than the sum of its parts. We're the opposite of Belgium, which is worth only a fraction of the sum of its parts
1. Our second most important player Kamil Glik has basically the same injury as Salah And he got injured almost two weeks after Salah. Glik (CB) is the head of our defense, he orchestrates the whole defensive game, so it's a huge loss. I wouldn't really count on us keeping a clean sheet vs Senegal or Colombia without him, to be honest. In fact I'd be shocked if we did. If I were to bet, I'd say vs Senegal 3:1 with Glik, 3:2 without him. Today the staff announced that he's ready to play, but I think it's just smokescreen for Senegal and doubt he'll play. His replacement played surprisingly well in the friendlies before the tournament, but he made a completely basic mistake (seriously, a CB's ABC) vs Chile that cost us a goal, so there's no doubt that without him our defence won't be nearly as good. And I don't expect us playing 3 defenders without Glik. Also, he's our best header for set pieces. Still, I believe that Senegal will play typical African defence (like other African team have thus far) and we'll manage to outscore them.
2. Artur Milik - our second best forward. This season he consequtively tore both ACLs, basically losing the entire season He managed to play only 7 games in Napoli at the end of the season, averaged 30 minutes a game and even though he managed to score 4 goals in them, he's a huge question mark. And he has a curse when playing in the national team. In the last 18 games (2.5 years) he only scored 2 goals, despite having a metric craptone of 100% opportunities, since all defenders are only thinking about Lewandowski. This vid is almost 2 years old, since then he scored one goal, but added two bars, some posts and many wasted golden opportunities :-/
I hope he finally breaks the curse, but so far stuff like that is his norm.
3. Krychowiak is nowhere near the player he was before injury. He was the only player outside of Real, Barca or Athetico to be selected to the best 11 of Primera Division 2 years ago, but he's been injured and while he's playing better with every game, he's not the same player.
Also, Mourinho said Senegal will win the group and according to transfermark.de Senegal's team is worth more than Poland's. Still, I believe in our boys and hope that European discipline will triumpf over African spontaneity
Cheers, lets hope for good games today!
(and if anyone predicts us to keep a clean sheet - give it a serious, long second thought )