The final stages of the Nations League takes place this week, with two engrossing semi-finals being played before the final takes place this weekend. The reigning world champions and European champions are still in the mix, but which two famous nations will reach the final?
Italy vs Spain Odds, Preview & Pick
Italy will still be riding a wave of adrenaline after beating England in the European Championships final in the summer. They could add a second international trophy to their collection this weekend, but they will first need to overcome the challenge laid down by the Spanish.
Roberto Mancini will only be too aware that this won’t be an easy fixture, as Spain almost made it through to the final at EURO 2020 by beating Italy. However, the Italians eventually came through on penalties in a stunning fixture at Wembley. If the quality seen on that night is the same here, then it will be another match for the ages.
Since winning the EUROs, Italy have won just once in their last three. They have been held by Bulgaria and Switzerland, but did win their last international fixture 5-0 against Lithuania.
Spain have also endured a poor result since the conclusion of the EUROs, as they were beaten 2-1 by Sweden. However, the Spanish have bounced back since that defeat, winning their last two, scoring six goals in the process.
This match could go either way, but Spain’s injury problems means that the preference must go the way of the European champions for this fixture in Milan.
Belgium vs France Odds, Preview & Pick
France and Belgium would have been disappointed with their performances at the EUROs, as both nations were knocked out at early stages. However, they will be looking to get back on the right track ahead of the World Cup next year by winning the Nations League.
France’s form since the EUROs has been slightly underwhelming, as they won just once in three matches in the last international break. They were held to draws against Bosnia and Ukraine, before narrowly getting a 2-0 win against Finland in the final qualifier that they played. Antoine Griezmann scored both goals in that win in Lyon, with a goal being scored in each half.
Belgium are the form side coming into this fixture, as they have won all three international fixtures that they have played since being beaten by Italy at the EUROs. Roberto Martinez’s side have scored nine goals in their last three fixtures against Estonia, Czech Republic and Belarus. Their 3-0 success over EURO dark horses the Czech Republic was their best performance, with goals being scored by Romelu Lukaku and Eden Hazard.
Once again, this is another interesting Nations League semi-final that could go either way. The preference is for Belgium to win the match, as they look to win a first major honour under the stewardship of Martinez this coming weekend.