Polish star Robert Lewandowski is a very prominent name when it comes to stars who won various championships with their clubs, but suffered with the teams of their countries.
Among these stars, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who did not manage to win anything with the Swedish national team, and George Weah, the former best player in the world, came out empty-handed with his country, Liberia, and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang did not win any title with the Gabonese team.
Lewandowski faces the risk of an early exit again with his country in the European Nations Cup 2020, after losing 1-2 against Slovakia in the team’s first match in the tournament.
Lewandowski is the Polish national team’s all-time top scorer, scoring 66 goals in 120 international matches, but he did not provide much for the team in major tournaments, as he scored two goals in 12 matches.
Lewandowski appeared lost on the grounds of St. Petersburg on Monday, and his danger did not appear until shortly before the end of the first half when he controlled a pass he received well, but he failed to capitalize on it.
“We managed to get Lewandowski out of the match,” said Slovakia coach Stefan Tarkovic after the match, while Andrej Duda of Slovakia said, “We succeeded in eliminating Lewandowski’s danger.”
But the Polish captain was subjected to many criticisms, as the Polish newspaper “Gazeta Wyborcza” reported on Tuesday that the player was among the team’s weaknesses on the field.
The comments of the Polish coach Paulo Sousa were more diplomatic, as he said, “Our attack did not work as it should, the center of the match was completely away from Robert.”
Lewandowski may not have players of the same level in his national team, as is the case in Bayern Munich, and the Polish star may share the same fate with Ibrahimovic and others who do not exist in a team with great stars such as Brazil, Argentina, France, Spain and Germany.
It was also not helped by the absence of two important players in attack, such as Arkadiusz Milik and Christoph Piatek, as the two missed the tournament due to injury.
The Bayern Munich star was not shy about what happened after Poland lost to Slovakia, as goalkeeper Vojtek Szczesny scored an own goal, and the second goal of the Slovak team came after Poland’s Grigorz Krichowiak was sent off for receiving a second warning.
“From my point of view, it was positive that we got more passes and chances,” Lewandowski said in statements to the official website of the European Union “UEFA” (UEFA).
“But on the other hand we have to adapt to the situation, it’s the European Nations final, you won’t have many chances.”
The Polish team is under pressure at the present time, before facing Spain, the favorite to top the group, next Friday, before playing its last match against Sweden on Wednesday.
The Polish team had qualified for the quarter-finals of the last edition of the tournament, and also exited early in the first round in the 2012 edition and the 2018 World Cup, but Lewandowski is still optimistic.
“Of course it is a difficult match,” Lewandowski said. “Spain are among the favorites not only to top the group but also to win the championship, but when you are on your day everything is possible, and I hope we have a good day at that time.”