THE Sunday action gets underway with Turkey facing Croatia. Gavin Murphy (@GamePlanGavin) gives us his best bookings view.
Turkey v Croatia | Sunday 14:00 | ITV1
Memories of a dramatic 2008 quarter-final and 2012 play-off tie will come flooding back for fans of Croatia and Turkey when the teams meet in their UEFA EURO 2016 Group D opener.
Turkey have yet to defeat Croatia in regulation or extra time: W0 D4 L2.
Croatia and Turkey made their UEFA European Championship finals debut at EURO ’96 and were paired in the opening round of games. Croatia won the match in Nottingham 1-0 with a late breakaway goal from Goran Vlaović. Then, as now, Fatih Terim was Turkey’s coach.
UEFA are expecting friction in this match and have attempted to keep a lid on things with the appointment of Swede Jonas Eriksson. The multi millionaire referee averaged 4.4 cards per game in the qualification phase but will have his work cut out in this one.
Nobody collected more reds than Croatia’s three in the qualifiers. They averaged 2.9 total cards whereas Turkey averaged 2.6. The past two meetings between these two countries had seven cards in each so a solid history.
Eriksson lost control of the Europa League final between Sevilla and Liverpool and I expect something similar here. So do the bookies. Back over 45pts with William Hill at 17/20.
Turkey v Croatia – Over 45 Bookings Points (17/20 William Hill)