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Smuda to reshuffle Poland’s defense; prepares for match against Russia

Coach Franciszek Smuda has stated that when co-hosts Poland faces Russia, they will fight a somewhat different team, or something like that in the aspect of defense. We will witness changes in the Polish team’s defensive play on the next Euro 2012 Group A encounter. Aside from the defensive change, a goalkeeping switch will also be executed.

This is somewhat a reaction on the Polish team’s somewhat disjointed performance in their opening game as they failed to win against Greece despite the odds initially being on their side. This is also in preparation for the Russians, as they massacred the Czechs with a 4-1 victory in Wroclaw.

Smuda has humbly acknowledged the dangerous attacking potential that Russia possesses after seeing their game against the Czech Republic and as part of the change, decided to bring in Dariusz Dudka to replace wide player Maciej Rybus.

Ludovic Obraniak will then be filling the space of the 22-year-old on the left and Jakub Blaszczykowski will be supporting Robert Lewandowski from the right. This means Poland will play with 3 defensive mids. The "idea" behind this is simple: three defensive mids in an attempt to frustrate the Russian team, who are obviously superior based on their recent game. This hopefully will have them lose the chance to counter-attack and score goals.

Though many are skeptical of the changes if they will work, a lot are waiting to see if these will truly be effective, or actually counterproductive. Though this is somewhat assumed as a tactic to win, other commentators have postulated that Smuda is actually aiming for a tie.

P. Zerek of Polish football online said: “That's why I worry this is not only a tactic to frustrate the Russians, it's a tactic/strategy by Smuda in which he wants us to play for a tie. Though a tie wouldn't be too bad in the grand scheme of things (depending on what happens in the Greece-Czech game), "playing for a tie" is always a dangerous proposition.”

I guess we’ll just see for ourselves whatever transpires on the coming game.

What do you think?