European U21 Championship. 19- 21 June
Monday 19th – Wednesday 21st June
Match Previews and Betting Tips
Monday afternoon sees the start of the second round of games in this year’s European Under-21 Championships. England are first into action in the afternoon game and the team will be urgently seeking a victory following a surprise opening day draw with Sweden while Poland will be looking for a second win in two games when they face the Swedes on Monday night.
Monday 19th June
Slovakia U21 v England U21. England were fully expected to beat Sweden in their opening Group A game last Friday but were left frustrated after a dull scoreless draw. Now in urgent need of three points, England face a very tough game with Slovakia who registered a good 2-1 victory over Poland in their first game. Despite England’s disappointing showing against Sweden, bookmakers still rate an England win as the favoured outcome at odds-on 8/11. It is very tempting to back a drawn game (or even a win for Slovakia at 7/2) but England will surely play better in Monday’s crucial game than they did last Friday and a narrow win for the Three Lions is the cautious prediction.
Poland U21 v Sweden U21. Having taken a first minute lead in last Friday’s game against Slovakia, Poland then proceeded to throw the game away and lost 2-1. That result was something of a minor shock but there is little doubt that Slovakia were deserving winners. Monday night’s opponents Sweden did themselves proud in their opening game when holding England to a scoreless draw and should be capable of doing at least as well against Poland. A drawn game looks a great bet at 23/10 on the evidence so far and a scoreless game could also be worth a small punt.
Tuesday 20th June
Serbia U21 v Macedonia U21. Although the final score was just 2-0, Serbia were comprehensively beaten by Portugal in their first tournament game last Saturday. That defeat was only to be expected and an easier game looks to be in store on Tuesday when Serbia face tournament 500/1 outsiders Macedonia. The Macedonians were thrashed 5-0 by Spain in last Saturday’s meeting and another defeat is all the underdogs can expect when they play Serbia. It won’t be as big as 5-0 but a win for Serbia is the only logical bet and very reasonably priced at 8/11.
Portugal U21 v Spain U21. The Big Guns of Group B square off on Tuesday night when Portugal face Spain in what promises to be a cracking match. Both teams began the tournament with facile victories with Spain being particularly impressive in a 5-0 destruction of Macedonia. The bookmakers seem in little doubt as to the outcome and have installed Spain as clear 10/11 favourites to win and a Portugal win as big as 3/1. The draw looks particularly attractive at around the 12/5 mark but Spain have a definite edge in the striking department and should be able to outgun their Iberian neighbours in a game that should produce a few goals.
Wednesday 21st June
Czech Republic U21 v Italy U21. 9/2 third favourites to win the Under-21 Championship, Italy had quite a comfortable victory on Sunday when beating Denmark 2-0 and a similar outcome can be expected when they face the Czech Republic on Wednesday afternoon. The Italians are 4/6 favourites to make it two wins in two games while a victory for the Czech Republic is rated as a 7/2 chance following last Sunday’s 2-0 defeat by Germany. Another win for the stylish Italians is the call and a final score of 2-0 would be worth an interest bet.
Germany U21 v Denmark U21. The Germans were one of the tournament favourites at around 3/1 before the competition got under way last weekend. Despite easily defeating Denmark 2-0 in their opening game, the odds of Germany lifting the trophy have drifted slightly with quotes of 4/1 generally available. This is probably due to Spain’s emphatic 5-0 thrashing of Macedonia which now sees them as market leaders at odds of around 9/4. Germany are now very attractively priced as they have a more than realistic chance of winning the tournament and should confirm that with an easy win against Denmark this Wednesday night. The Danes have already lost 2-0 to Italy and a similar result looks very probable in midweek making the odds of 11/20 for a German victory quite appealing.