Italy will play host to Wales at Stadio Olimpico on Sunday, June 20, for their final group stage match of EURO 2020. The Azzurri are already though to the next stage, so the motivation to win is questionable, which isn’t the case for Wales, who will make it into the knockout stage with at least a draw this evening.
Italy vs Wales
When: Sunday, June 20 – 18:00 CEST
Where: Stadio Olimpico in Rome, Italy
Weather: Sunny, 30°C
Referee: Ovidiu Hațegan (ROU)
Wales need only one point from this match to make it through to the next stage. Even a loss could be enough, assuming Switzerland doesn’t completely obliterate the struggling Turks in Baku.
For the hosts, this match is more of a formality rather than a must-win. They’re already through into the knockout stage after two commanding performances against Turkey (3-0) and Switzerland (3-0). The players will likely want to leave a mark this evening, but given how unimportant this match is for them, we might see a more laid back approach from the hosts.
Italy Don’t Need to Win
Italy are 2-0 with a 6-0 goal difference, which guarantees them promotion into the EURO 2020 knockout stage. Although they don’t need to win against Wales this evening, the Azzurri surely won’t want to lose.
A defeat against Wales would see Italy finish as Group A runners-up, which isn’t where they want to be. Group A runners-up will face Group B second-place finisher, meaning Russia, Denmark, or Finland in Amsterdam. While not exactly unbeatable teams, the problem is with the required travel after that stage.
If Italy end up second in Group A and win their first round of EURO knockout stage, they would need to travel to Baku for their last-eight match. The travel they’ll need to take alone is enough for Italy to do their best to keep their spot atop the group.
A draw or a win this evening, however, would see Italy travel to London, then to Munich, and back to London. Assuming they make it that far.
Wales Could Seal The Deal Today
Wales need only a point to secure a promotion, and they’ll surely want to make it happen. The Dragons enter this match off a solid performance against Turkey, who they beat 2-0 on Wednesday.
Wales were the better team that day and would have easily won 3-0 had Gareth Bale not missed a penalty in 61’. Wales are slowly proving themselves as a sturdy and hard-to-beat team, but that will get put to a proper test this evening.
We expect Wales to make some changes to their line-up for this match. They’re all but guaranteed to advance, so they’ll likely want to keep their star striker Kieffer Moore out of the game and give him some rest ahead of the knockout stage. Bale could join Moore on the bench.
This could lead to a more defensive formation with five in the back, as there are no other strikers to get put in the team.
Italy vs Wales Betting Picks
As noted, Italy don’t need to win, albeit they can’t afford to lose, whereas Wales will be happy with a draw tonight and will want to preserve their strikers for the fixtures ahead.
Wales have proven to be tough to beat, conceding no more than a goal in all but two of their last 10 outings. The only two exceptions were a 0-3 loss to France and 1-3 against Belgium at the start of June and back in March.
Both teams will be satisfied with a draw today, and it’s not entirely unlikely we might see just that. Italy will want to finish the group with a perfect record but won’t want to risk conceding a goal by being overly aggressive. At the same time, it’s not like they can count on being too successful in the final third, given the opponent they’re facing.
Prediction: Wales +1.00 Asian Handciap
If you wish to start betting with us on esports, football, tennis, horse racing and esports, join our premium membership. You can find more information about our service HERE.