Preview: Czech Republic vs. North Macedonia – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Monday’s friendly clash between Czech Republic and North Macedonia, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Czech Republic will round off their preparations for this summer’s European Championship with a friendly against North Macedonia in Hradec Kralove on Monday night.

The hosts will begin their Euro 2024 campaign against Portugal on June 18, while North Macedonia will be back in competitive action in September in the UEFA Nations League.

Match preview

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Czech Republic made it four straight wins on Friday with a thumping 7-1 success over Malta, and the national side will now be eyeing a fifth victory in a row in their final warm-up match for Euro 2024.

Ivan Hasek‘s side will play in Group F at Euro 2024 alongside Turkey, Georgia and Portugal, and they will be expecting to challenge for second spot in the section, or qualify for the knockout round as one of the best third-placed finishers.

Czechoslovakia won the European Championship back in 1976, but Czech Republic’s best performance in the competition came in 2004, when they reached the semi-finals.

Since then, the national side have made the quarter-finals twice, including at Euro 2020, but they did not qualify for the 2022 World Cup.

Czech Republic are set to enter Euro 2024 in strong form, unbeaten in their last six matches, while they have only lost once since late 2022, and it will be interesting to see how they fare this summer.

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North Macedonia, meanwhile, will enter the contest off the back of a 3-0 defeat to Croatia, and they will not be present at this summer’s European Championship.

Indeed, the Lions finished fourth in their qualification section, only picking up eight points from eight matches, so their next competitive action will be in the UEFA Nations League at the start of September.

Blagoja Milevski‘s side will face Faroe Islands, Armenia and Latvia in Group 4 of League C at the 2024-25 competition.

North Macedonia famously competed in the finals of Euro 2020, but they lost all three of their matches in the group stage and then unsurprisingly failed to qualify for the 2022 World Cup.

The Lions suffered a 6-1 defeat to the Czech Republic when the two nations last locked horns in June 2005, but their only previous friendly ended in a 1-1 draw back in February 2001.

Czech Republic friendly form:

Czech Republic form (all competitions):

North Macedonia friendly form:

North Macedonia form (all competitions):

Team News

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Czech Republic head coach Hasek will make changes to the side that started against Malta last time out, with Tomas Soucek among those set to come into the XI.

There will also be spots in the side for Patrik Schick and Adam Hlozek, and the fact that Czech Republic scored seven times without them on Friday was a huge positive.

Vladimir Coufal is set to retain his spot as the right-sided wing-back, while Antonin Barak, who is set to be an important player for his country at Euro 2024, is in line to play in central midfield.

As for North Macedonia, Aleksandar Trajkovski is comfortably the leading goalscorer in the squad with 21, and he is set to lead the line once again here.

Elif Elmas, who plays his club football for RB Leipzig, is also likely to be another notable inclusion in the starting side, while ex-Leeds United player Ezgjan Alioski should also be in the XI.

Davor Zdravkovski of Motherwell is the only uncapped player in the North Macedonian squad, and he will be hoping to be given a chance to impress ahead of the start of the 2024-25 UEFA Nations League.

Czech Republic possible starting lineup:
Kovar; Vitik, Hranac, Zima; Coufal, Barak, Soucek, Sulc, Jurasek; Hlozek, Schick

North Macedonia possible starting lineup:
Dimitrievski; Zajkov, Velkovski, Musliu; Ashkovski, Alimi, Atanasov, Alioski; Elmas; Miovski, Trajkovski

We say: Czech Republic 2-0 North Macedonia

North Macedonia are certainly capable of making this a competitive match, which is what Czech Republic will want ahead of Euro 2024. The hosts can all upon the greater quality all across the pitch, though, and we are expecting them to triumph in Monday’s international friendly.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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