WILL England beat Italy on Wednesday and secure a semi-final place at the Euro U21 Championships? Chris Graham (@chrisgraham79) previews the game.
England U21 v Italy U21 | Wednesday 19:45 | BT Sport 1
Two games down, one game left. Yes, it’s crunch time for both England and Italy on Wednesday as they battle it out for a semi-final berth.
Advantage lies with England as they have three points compared to the one of Italy. This essentially means that Italy must win to have a chance of going through while a draw would be enough for England provided Sweden don’t beat Portugal in the other match.
Ponderous. Yeah that sums things up. Both these sides have been ponderous in this competition so far. England lost 1-0 to Portugal in their opening match and then huffed and puffed for 85 minutes on Sunday before finally breaking down Sweden.
Italy surprisingly lost 2-1 to Sweden in their opening match and coach Luigi Di Biagio shuffled his pack next time out against the Portuguese. The reshaped side performed much better but just couldn’t break down Portugal on Sunday and the game ended 0-0.
I think we’ll see a similar edgy, nail-biting encounter here on Wednesday and it’s no surprise to see less than a betting point separate the three Win-Draw-Win outcomes.
I’ll avoid that market though and play on the goals. You won’t be surprised to know I’ll be going under. Three of the four Group B games so far saw less than two goals and with England desperate not to lose and Italy finding it hard to break sides down it should be a similar pattern here.
BetVictor are 5/4 on Under 2 Goals on their Asian Handicap Goal Line. This means that if no goals or just one are scored I’ll get paid out, two and I get my cash back. I’ll also have a small play on No Goalscorer at 9/1 with Betway.