Mark O’Haire: Stats say it’ll be tight and low scoring
Back draw/under 2.5 goals double @ 3.45
Major tournament finals tend to be tight affairs. Going back to Euro ’96, three of the last six European Championship finales finished all-square after 90 minutes.
If we include the World Cup since 1994, seven of 13 showpiece deciders paid out for draw backers.
With the stalemate the biggest-priced option in the match odds market on Sunday, I’m keen to be involved.
However, we can take the price a little further by adding Under 2.5 Goals into the mix. The goal line has been set relatively low and it’s difficult to disagree with the market when we consider what’s at stake. By opposing goals alongside the draw, we’re effectively supporting the 0-0 and 1-1 correct score at a generous 3.45 on the Exchange.
The 3.45 implies there’s less than a 30% chance this game ends 0-0 or 1-1. Yet both semi-finals saw this selection bank, Italy were also forced to extra-time by Austria at Wembley, and England appeared to be heading that way against Germany before a late flurry.
At this stage of the competition, the fear of losing can take over and finals are rarely thrilling affairs. With little to choose between the two teams, I’m happy to sit on the fence and support the Draw and Under 2.5 Goals at a handsome price.
Kevin Hatchard: Shaw can add to assist tally
Back Luke Shaw in the Anytime Assist market at a boosted 8.07/1
Shaw deserves enormous credit for translating his fine form for Manchester United into success at international level, and the fact that he wasn’t in the official tournament sticker album shows how he has forced his way back into contention.
Shaw was involved in the build-up to both goals against Germany, set up two goals versus Ukraine, and is a danger with his delivery at set plays. He should also get room to work against the inconsistent Giovanni Di Lorenzo. I liked this bet anyway, but with Sportsbook giving us a very generous boost from 11/2 to 7/1, it’s definitely one to keep in mind.
Roberto Carlos on Luke Shaw: “He’s got everything to get to the top. He’s the left-back for England and that, in itself, says a lot. Similarities I think could be that he has strength and the desire to win, just like I did.”#UCL pic.twitter.com/lnm6PdklYB
? UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) July 7, 2021
Andy Schooler: Low on goals, low on bookings
Under 2.5 goals and under 40 booking points @ 2.77/4
Under 2.5 goals has landed in eight of the last nine European Championship finals and these two sides have been the best two defensively in the tournament – Italy have conceded three times, England just once. If either gets ahead, expect them to try to see the game out.
There hasn’t been an abundance of cards at Euro 2020 and that’s reflected by the record of the two finalists – Italy have picked up just seven yellow cards in their six matches, England only five. With ref Bjorn Kuipers having stayed below 40 booking points (10 for a yellow, 25 for a red) in seven of his 11 continental club games this season (and showing just one in England’s World Cup qualifier with Poland in March) this double holds plenty of appeal.
Paul Robinson: Harry’s head often delivers
Back Harry Maguire to have a shot on target @ 12/5
The Three Lions have some fantastic headers of the ball, but none more so than Harry Maguire. The Manchester United centre-back forced a top-class save from Kasper Schmeichel in the semis and despite missing the opening two group games, he has already registered seven shots this tournament – four of which were on target.
That is an average of one shot on target per game played, and you can get him at 12/5 to have 1+ shot on target in the final.
James Eastham: So little between the sides
Back the 90-minute draw @ 3.052/1
We saw how little there was to choose between the four teams that made the semi-finals as both games – Italy vs Spain and England vs Denmark – went to extra-time. The final looks set to be equally close, making the the draw the value pick in the Match Odds market.