In Group C’s third World Cup match, Denmark and Australia will lock horns on June 21 (3pm local/10pm AEST) at the Samara Stadium.
Also known as the Cosmos Arena, the venue will serve as a vital stage for both these sides as they look to progress to the knockout stage.
Australia slumped to an unfortunate 2-1 loss to France in their opening match, while Denmark rode their luck in a 1-0 win over Peru.
The two teams have played each other just three times before with Denmark winning twice and Socceroos claiming a solitary victory in 2010.
Both sides only secured their place at Russia after successful qualification play-offs, with the Danes overcoming the Republic of Ireland and Australia defeating both Syria and Honduras.
|Game||Denmark vs Australia|
|Date||Thursday June 21|
|Time||15.00 LOCAL / 22:00 AEST|
|Stream||SBS / Optus Sport|
TV Channel & Live Stream
In Australia, the match will be televised exclusively by SBS with live streams available via SBS and Optus Sport.
Optus Sport have the rights to every single World Cup game and a month’s subscription is available for $14.99 .
|AUS TV channel||Online stream|
|SBS||SBS / Optus Sport|
Squads & Team News
|Goalkeepers||Ryan, Jones, Vukovic|
|Defenders||Behich, Degenek, Jurman, Meredith, Risdon, Sainsbury|
|Midfielders||Irvine, Jedinak, Luongo, Milligan, Mooy, Petratos, Rogic,|
|Forwards||Cahill, Juric, Kruse, Leckie, Nabbout, Arzani, Maclaren|
After opening their World Cup campaign against the French, the Socceroos could look to field a more attacking line-up against Denmark.
They will however have to be alert defensively with Tottenham star Christian Eriksen the one to watch out for in midfield.
Eriksen’s presence could see the likes of Jackson Irvine or Mile Jedinak deployed in midfield as a way to limit his impact on the game.
Up front, the pace of Andrew Nabbout or Jamie Maclaren might suit this match with Australia likely needing to catch a strong Danish defence out on the counter.
Potential Australia starting XI: Ryan; Risdon, Sainsbury, Milligan, Behich; Jedinak, Mooy, Leckie, Kruse, Rogic; Nabbout.
|Goalkeepers||Schmeichel, Lossl, Ronow|
|Defenders||Kjaer, Christensen, Jorgensen, Vestergaard, Dalsgaard, Stryger, Knudsen|
|Midfielders||Kvist, Delaney, Lerager, Schone, Eriksen, Krohn-Dehli|
|Forwards||Sisto, Braithwaite, Cornelius, Fischer, Poulsen, Jorgensen, Dolberg|
The Danish squad is best known for its three Premier League stars in Kasper Schmeichel, Andreas Christensen and Christian Eriksen.
They do however boast a deep talent pool with quality players like Thomas Delaney lining up in the Bundesliga and Pione Sisto in La Liga.
Like Australia, Denmark have been deploying a 4-2-3-1 formation leading up to the World Cup with Eriksen instrumental in the attacking midfield role and Schmeichel unbeaten in goals across four friendlies.
Potential Denmark starting XI: Schmeichel; Dalsgaard, Kjaer, Christensen, Stryger; Kvist, Delaney, Poulsen, Eriksen, Sisto; Jorgensen.
This is a match both teams will think they can win and a victory for either side will be a huge boost to their hopes of escaping Group C.
Sitting 12th in the world rankings, Denmark are favourites and arrived in Russia on the back of ominous form.
Having not conceded a goal in four straight games, the Danes also haven’t lost since October 2016 when they suffered a shock 1-0 defeat to Montenegro.
A final 2-0 friendly win over Mexico gave them a timely confidence boost too with Eriksen returning to the side and immediately showing his influence assisting the first before scoring the second.
Denmark then opened their World Cup campaign with a far from convincing 1-0 win over Peru, who did miss a first-half penalty.
The Socceroos meanwhile fell narrowly to the French, and had found form leading upto Russia, undefeated in three friendlies before the World Cup including a 0-0 draw with Colombia and 4-0 win over Czech Republic.
New coach Bert van Marwijk led the Dutch to the 2010 World Cup final and feels he can led Australia out of this group with a win against the Danes vital to those ambitions.
With both sides favouring a 4-2-3-1 formation, this could be a particularly tight affair with the emphasis all on the Socceroos to ensure they get a positive result.