Kosovo vs Spain predictions and match preview for Wednesday’s World Cup 2022 qualifier. Read on for the head-to-head, team news and predicted lineups as La Roja travel to Pristina.
|Wednesday 8th September 2021
|20:45 (local time)
|World Cup 2022 Qualifying
Kosovo vs Spain Preview
Spain’s bid to reach the 2022 World Cup takes them to an unfamiliar location on Wednesday as La Roja visit Pristina for the first time to take on Kosovo. This will be a huge occasion for the home team, playing in just their second ever World Cup qualifying campaign, but they have shown at various times in their brief international journey that they have players capable of causing problems for more illustrious opponents.
Spain really can’t afford any slip-ups here or indeed in any of their remaining group games. They are top of Group B with 10 points from 5 games but it’s Sweden who are truly in pole position in this group having won 3 from 3. To reach Qatar directly, Spain are almost certainly going to have to win the reverse fixture against the Swedes and hope the Scandinavian side slips up elsewhere too.
Luis Enrique’s men come into this one following a much needed morale boost in the shape of a 4-0 home win over what can at times be a stubborn Georgian side. Goals from Jose Gaya, Carlos Soler, Ferran Torres and Pablo Sarabia sealed the victory and there were further goals ruled out by VAR. Soler’s impressive showing again continues his stunning start to the 2021/22 season with the Valencia man having scored in every match he has played so far this term.
A number of players who impressed against Georgia should keep their places here for what will be a different kind of test against a Kosovo side that does tend to try and play with a bit more attacking intent than some of the real European minnows.
Having lost their opening two group games in the spring, Kosovo have put in some improved displays this month, winning 1-0 in Georgia before a 1-1 home draw against Greece on Sunday. They grabbed a 91st minute leveller in that match which was the least they deserved from the game and with 6 wins from their last 10 internationals overall, they are capable of giving Spain a run for their money here. However the hosts are hampered by a number of selection issues which will reduce the chances of an upset.
Head to Head
- Spain beat Kosovo 3-1 earlier in the group.
- There have been no other recent meetings.
Kosovo are missing both Besar Halimi and Lirim Kastrati to suspension here. They are also without the unavailable Elbasan Rashani and Bersant Celina.
Jose Gaya has withdrawn from the Spain squad so Jordi Alba will be back at left-back here. Aymeric Laporte may also not feature due to fatigue. Alvaro Morata may return in attack.
Predicted Kosovo Starting Lineup:
Muric – Hadergjonaj, Aliti, Rrahmani, Vojvoda – Berisha, Dresevic, Loshaj – Muslija, Muriqi, Rashica (4-3-3)
Predicted Spain Starting Lineup:
Simon – Alba, Albiol, Garcia, Azpilicueta – Soler, Busquets, Llorente – Sarabia, Morata, Torres (4-3-3)
Kosovo vs Spain Predictions
Score Prediction: Kosovo 1-3 Spain
Kosovo shouldn’t be completely discounted here and Spain have struggled in some away games against even weaker teams in recent years. However it was a much better showing from La Roja on Sunday against Georgia and a repeat level of performance here ought to be enough to seal a valuable three points in their bid to make it to Qatar.