Euro 2016 Gameday 9 Preview
Euro 2016 Game Odds & Teams To Back
By Matt Pitt
Belgium (-142) versus Republic of Ireland (+450)
Much fancied Belgium slumped to a 2-0 defeat against Italy in their opening Euro 2016 fixture, making this game with Republic of Ireland having more riding on it that it should.
Belgium were second best, and by some margin, in their game against Italy, and coach Marc Wilmots needs to get his players fired up for the game against the Irish because if they slip up again, their tournament will almost certainly be over.
On paper, Belgium have Republic of Ireland crushed, but the Irish have a never say die attitude and will fight for every ball. Going into this game, Belgium will know the result of the Italy vs. Sweden game, and will be aware of what result they need to better their chances of qualification.
Personally, I think the Belgians will be on the all-out attack and going for three points regardless of prior results.
Romelu Lukaku had a good season overall, yet his form recently hasn’t been the best. He’s +350 to score first and +120 to score in 90-minutes, although I like the look of +500 for Kevin De Bruyne to open the scoring and +187 to score at any time.
Republic of Ireland are capable of coming away with a draw (+290), but I fear they will face a Belgian backlash and the boys in red will win by one or two goals. Sorry, Ireland fans.
Iceland (+160) versus Hungary (+210)
Iceland versus Hungary is hardly the most exciting fixture on the schedule, yet both have a chance of giving their qualification hopes a major boost if they claim all three points on Saturday.
Portugal were stunned by a hard-working Iceland team last time out, with the match finishing in a 1-1 draw, and Iceland showed glimpses of excellence in that game, even if Portugal were off color.
Hungary were expected to be beaten comfortably by Austria in their opening fixture, that was not the case because Hungary ran out 2-0 winners, thanks in part to Austria having a player dismissed.
Both teams are quite evenly matched overall and I would not be surprised to see this game end in a stalemate. The draw is currently +210 with a 1-1 draw looking most likely at +500, and the under 2.5 goals market currently offering odds of -175.
I also like the look of Gylfi Sigurdsson to score at any time in the 90-minutes at +150, the Swansea City midfielder is a set piece specialist and great at long-range shots, which Iceland may be limited to in this encounter.
Portugal (-125) versus Austria (+400)
Portugal had to make do with a point in their first group game against Iceland, letting their lead slip in an overall disappointing performance.
Iceland nullified the threat of Cristiano Ronaldo for most of the 90-minutes, and the frustrated Real Madrid forward slated Iceland’s approach to the game after the match didn’t go his way.
Poor is how most of the press has described Portugal, something that needs to vastly improve against an Austrian side who fell 2-0 in their game against Hungary, and who are desperate to get some points on the board.
This means Austria are going to have to attack the shaky Portuguese defence, which in itself leaves their own back four exposed to the fast Portugal counterattacks.
I personally like the look of both teams to score and Portugal to win at +320.