Monday brings with it a trio of decent games, with Spain vs Czech Republic expected to bring plenty of excitement, whilst Northern Ireland kick-start their Euro 2016 campaign against Sweden. However, it may well be a case of saving the best for last as Belgium take on Italy in the 8pm slot.
Spain vs Czech Republic (2pm)
Match Betting Best Odds: Spain 1/2, Draw 17/5, Czech Republic
Having become the first team to win successive tournaments in 2012, Spain start their bid to score the hat-trick as warm favourites to beat the Czech Republic. They may not be as good as they were 4 years ago, or even 8 years ago, but they were impressive in qualifying, winning their last 5 qualifiers to nil. Their form has dipped since in friendlies, but the real Spain is likely to turn-up here. The Czechs look sure to put-up a fight though, as they like to play attacking football, though friendly defeats by South Korea and Scotland suggest they shouldn’t trouble Spain, who also beat them both times in qualifying in 2011. There will be plenty of takers for the 1/2 Spain, but the 5/4 for Spain to win to nil looks better value.
Spain to win to nil @ 5/4 (Betfred, Boylesports, Paddy Power)
Republic Of Ireland vs Sweden (5pm)
Match Betting Best Odds: Republic Of Ireland 5/2, Draw 11/5, Sweden 6/4
Both teams had similar results in their recent friendlies, with one win, two draws and one victory showing their inconsistencies. Meanwhile, the only significant previous head-to-heads were in the 2014 World Cup qualifying, when Sweden won 2-1 in Ireland and drew 0-0 at home. That 0-0 was a rare bore draw for these two teams though, as both of them have scored in their last 10 games – making the 6/5 for both teams to score look the value bet.
Both teams to score @ 6/5 (Betfred, Paddy Power)
Belgium vs Italy (8pm)
Match Betting Best Odds: Belgium 8/5, Draw 5/2, Italy 23/10
Belgium will draw plenty of confidence from their 3-1 friendly defeat of Italy in 2015, and have won 8 of their last 10 games, scoring in all 10 of those games. Meanwhile, Italy have won just 6 of their last 10 games, and have failed to beat Germany, Spain, Romania and Belgium in that period though, just like Belgium, they have scored in their last 10 games. It’s 6/5 that both teams score – and that again looks a value bet.
Both teams to score @ 6/5 (Paddy Power)