Well then, where did that first week of Euro 2016 go? The games are flying in thick and fast, meaning week two should bring even greater drama. Let’s hope it can generate increased returns too, starting with Friday’s selections.
There’s three games on offer, and we’ll be betting on all of them. A hat-trick of winners would certainly get our weekend up and running. Good luck!
Friday’s Matches: Italy v Sweden (2PM, ITV); Czech Republic v Croatia (5PM, BBC One); Spain v Turkey (8PM, ITV)
After putting in the best performance of the first round of fixtures, fans will naturally be eager to see how Antonio Conte’s Italy perform in their second match against Sweden. The Azzurri were near faultless in their Group E opener, but the Swedes will always pose a danger with Zlatan Ibrahimovic leading the line.
The day’s tea time fixture sees Group D leaders Croatia look to cement their place in the round of 16 with a second win agains the Czech Republic. The Czechs very nearly succeeded in their attempts to frustrate defending champions Spain, but are now in desperate need of points as they look to avoid an early exit.
Spain are in action too as they take on Turkey in what should be another cracking evening contest. The Turks weren’t great against Croatia, but did show promising signs. However, they’ll be facing an uphill battle against one of the pre-tournament favourites.
Whatever happens, it should be a fantastic introduction to what should be a great second weekend in France.
Toe Punter v The Bookies
Friday offers three games, and we’ll be placing singles on all of them, starting with the afternoon clash in Toulouse.
A moment of Zlatan magic rescued a draw against the Republic of Ireland, but Sweden will need to do far better if they want to disrupt Italy’s formidable start to the tournament. Unfortunately for Erik Hamren’s Scandinavians, we cannot see that happening.
Italy’s back three look almost impenetrable, we’re backing them to keep another shutout en route to three points and a place in the round of 16.
Bet: Italy to win-to-nil @ 17/10 with Paddy Power (£10 stake)
In the 5PM fixture, it’s the Czechs who are in serious need of points. However, it’s Croatia that hold all the aces with the likes of Ivan Rakitic and Luka Modric looking to fire Ante Cacic’s side to the knockouts.
Once again we’re backing the dark horses to prevail.
Bet: Croatia to win @ 10/11 with BetVictor (£10 stake)
Spain had to wait until the dying minutes against the Czech’s, but dominated possession as we’d expect. Question marks remain over the attacking qualities of Vicente Del Bosque’s men, but the holders should be in control of this one too.
With this in mind we’re backing Spain on the corners handicap.
Bet: Spain -3.5 Asian handicap corners @ 19/20 (£10 stake)