The EURO 2020 Qualifiers continue today with 7 football matches. This post recaps the games from yesterday and then suggests two betting picks for today.
Saturday betting summary
What a show did Netherlands v Germany produce! Not looking from a sports betting perspective only but purely as football fans, you couldn’t even go to the kitchen to grab a sandwich without missing a key moment in this match or just a spectacular play. Both teams are aware they are clear favorites for the top two spots and direct tickets for EURO 2020. Maybe that fact helped them to play great attacking football from the very start. Netherlands aimed to continue their strong form, whereas Germany wanted to get revenge for the 3:0 defeat at the same stadium just several months ago. Germany took a 0:2 lead, then Netherlands managed to equalize before the ex-World Champions scored the winning goal in the 90th minute. An instant classic! In the end, Germany were the winning pick at average odds of 3.00 (2/1 or +200).
In the same group, The Green and White Army clinched a victory in the final minutes against Belarus. This was much-needed for them and they achieved the required 6 points this spring. They are obliged to do the same in June before the four clashes against Germany and Netherlands in the autumn. Northern Ireland are an absolute underdog to qualify from this group, but we shouldn’t rule them out completely as long as they have a theoretical chance.
The team that earned the accolades as second-best in the world last summer, Croatia, lost their game at Hungary after being overturned. Hungary proved once again that they are a force to be reckoned with in front of their own fans. The odds for the winning result in this game gravitated around 6.00 (5/1 or +500). I predicted a draw yesterday, which was the case until 15 minutes from time, but that wasn’t enough for a winning bet. This result, coupled with the victory Wales got versus Slovakia, leaves four teams with 3 points apiece in this group. This sets the scene for very intriguing games when the next Matchday is played in June.
Slovenia couldn’t get the job done at home to North Macedonia and they have a mountain to climb for the rest of the campaign in order to qualify. The same is valid for Austria who were surprisingly destroyed by Israel. Poland left it late to overcome Latvia and despite their ruthless power in attack in the face of Lewandowski and Piatek, scored just two goals. The same result, 2:0, was achieved by Belgium and Scotland away to Cyprus and San Marino respectively.
These three games are an example of why it’s tricky to bet on the winning margin of heavy favorites in these qualifiers. When odds for a straight win by them are around 1.05 – 1.15, it’s tempting to look at wins by 3, 4, or more goals and grab juicy betting odds. However, you never know when the players in these teams are in the mood to take their foot off the pedal and protect their legs for the forthcoming games of their clubs.
Russia humiliated Kazakhstan with a 4:0 away win. This game raised even more eyebrows how Scotland lost 0:3 at the same stadium. The results from yesterday meant that all four tips I provided yesterday were lost. There are such days in sports betting, I know it and I never get discouraged after them, and neither should you when they also happen to you. On to the next bets with the hope of more success!
Bets for today
The first tip today is a home win in Kosovo v Bulgaria. Kosovo are playing very enthusiastically in front of their emphatic crowd. The stadium is full no matter if they play Spain or San Marino. They are flying high after securing a playoff spot for EURO 2020 by winning their Nations League group. They almost beat Denmark in a friendly last week but conceded a goal in the final minutes. Kosovo are very motivated for another positive result tonight.
The opposition provides perfect opportunity for that. Bulgaria are not playing convincing football at the moment. They drew at home to Montenegro on Friday mostly thanks to a huge refereeing mistake which gifted them a penalty that never existed. They entered the match with injury problems which were exacerbated after Chochev got a horrific injury that will leave him out of action for at least six months. In addition, Bulgaria are a weak away team, they often crumble under pressure in games with huge significance like today’s one, and they don’t handle euphoric fan support for the other team very well.
All of the above leads to a shrewd bet on odds of 2.50 (6/4 or +150) on Kosovo to win with a 4/5 confidence level.
The second tip today is BTTS in Portugal v Serbia on odds of 2.10. Both teams have immense talent in attack. Portugal are the reigning European Champions and were very unlucky not to win versus Ukraine in Matchday 1. Cristiano Ronaldo and Co will be motivated to make up for this with a victory today. Serbia are also a great team with the likes of Tadic, Mitrovic and Milinkovic-Savic playing up front. They demonstrated the quality they possess even fielding their second unit in a friendly at Germany last week which ended 1:1. Both teams are in a good form and have guaranteed playoff spots for the final phase of the competition. A bet on both teams to score at these odds has value and I will jump on it with 4/5 betting units.
Rest of the action
All other games today have a clear favorite and, as discussed, I don’t think betting on them at these short odds is reasonable in the long-term. Gambling on the winning margins of victory can also be tricky, so I’m not going to force my luck today with more sports bets as I think the two betting tips above are more than enough.
Good luck with your bets today!
Please note that odds vary. The odds mentioned here are correct at the time of writing.