Gary | Wed 15/06/2016 - 13:30 EDT

Euro 2016 Matchday 8 Matchup Comparisons

Euro 2016 Matchday 8 Matchup Comparisons
June 17 sees three Euro 2016 games take place in France, with the highlight of the trio being the mouth-watering Italy versus Sweden match. Here are our thoughts and predictions.

Euro 2016 Game Odds & Teams To Back

By Matt Pitt

Italy (-120) versus Sweden (+450)

Pelle

The Stadium de Toulouse is the venue for the Italy versus Sweden Euro 2016 clash on June 17 at 3:00 p.m. CET, and what a game of soccer this has the potential to be.

Italy usually start tournaments slowly, relying on their superb defensive capabilities to grind out results. However, in their opening game against Belgium, coach Antonio Conte played a much more attacking style of play, and Italy looked impressive to say the least.

While the Italian squad may lack a global superstar that they have boasted in recent years, they look like a team, a unit, and first impressions suggest Italy are going to take some stopping in the European Championships.

Graziano Pelle missed a couple of chances against Belgium, but still looked sharp, and seems good value at +400 to open the scoring and +140 to score at any time. 

Zlatan

If you are looking at the goalscorer market, take a look at Sweden’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic. The striker is looking to become the first player to score in four European Championships, and after spells with Juventus, Inter Milan, and AC Milan, he knows his way around an Italian back four. +550 to score first and +220 to score in 90-minutes are the current odds.

Sweden were not overly impressive against Republic of Ireland, and Italy should be far too strong for them. A 1-0 Italy win comes in at +450 and that would probably be my bet.

Czech Republic (+380) versus Croatia (-117)

Luka

This is the first time Czech Republic and Croatia have met in a competitive setting, and both will fancy their chances of returning from Saint-Etienne with all three points.

Czech Republic lost 1-0 against Spain in their opening game, although it took an 87th minute goal to settle matters. Spain were underpar, yet still enjoyed 72 percent of possession, and had 18 shots compared to the Czechs six. 

Croatia dominated Turkey in their first group game, and ran out deserved 1-0 winners thanks to a superb volleyed goal by Luka Modric. While Turkey were not on point, Croatia looked like a very good team and I can see them easily turning over Czech Republic on June 17.

A Croatia win is -117 and that is my bet for this game. If Czech Republic sit back as they did against Spain, this could be a low scoring encounter, but if they realise this could be their best chance of three points and come out attacking, I fear Croatia could bag two or three as they play some excellent soccer and are packed with intelligent players.

Spain (-250) versus Turkey (+900)

 Spain

Spain were unconvincing in their 1-0 win over Czech Republic, and never looked like they had got out of second gear, this despite having 72 percent of the ball and 18 shots on goal. 

Alvaro Morata looked lively up front and is +320 to be the first goal scorer and -120 to score at any point, the exact same odds as veteran striker Aritz Aduriz whose game may be more suited to the physical Turks.

Turkey could go into this game looking to soak up pressure and come away with a point, focussing their attention on getting three points from their final game against Czech Republic. It’s a dangerous strategy to employ as the Spanish are so good with the ball, but if they can hold out for 90 minutes and escape with a draw (+360) Turkey will be the happier of the two teams.

Check Out Luka Modric’s Superb Goal Against Turkey

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