Matchday 1 pits some of the tournaments strongest against eachother for what promises to be one of the most spectacular competitions in recent times.
Turkey vs Italy
Friday, June 11th, 3.00 PM (EDT)
The first of 51 matches sees Turkey face Italy at Rome’s Stadio Olimpico Stadium, a considerable advantage for Roberto Mancini’s men who do not have to travel far for the fixture.
Since taking over the national team Mancini has elevated this Italy side to another level, winning 2 thirds of the games they have played under his tenure.
The squad balances the mix of old talent with young exciting prospects to a highly effective degree, with the experienced combination of Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci holding down the back line, while the likes of Nico Barella and Federico Chiesa create chances going forward.
— Italy ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (@azzurri) June 10, 2021
Alongside Italy, Turkey are the other standout team in Group A, and they aren’t without their own star players, between Ligue 1 winner Burak Yilmaz and Hakan Çalhanoğlu the team are in safe hands for scoring options, and always provide a real threat from set pieces.
However, up against this Italy side which have not conceded a goal for 8 games, and who are playing on home soil, we would be surprised if this one didn’t go the way of the Azzurri.
England vs Croatia
Sunday, June 13th, 9.00 AM (EDT)
One of the most exciting fixtures of matchday one is undoubtedly this matchup between the 2018 World Cup Finalists Croatia and one of the most promising England squads in recent times.
Croatia haven’t had the most convincing run of form over the last year, winning just 4 of their last 13 games against some admittedly difficult opposition, and rarely looking like the team that captivated the world with their legendary run in Russia.
Another day done 💪
The countdown to Croatia continues! pic.twitter.com/sD0SGBrFbv
— England (@England) June 10, 2021
England on the other hand have lost just 2 of their last 13, and have won the last 6 straight, scoring 15 goals while conceding just 1 at the other end. With a plethora of promising talent at their disposal, which includes the likes of Champions League winners’ Reece James and Mason Mount, as well as Premier League Champion Phil Foden, it is easy to see why people are so optimistic about this squad.
In a group that does not look overly difficult Croatia and England stand out as the most likely to progress, but head to head there still looks to be a huge gap between the squads, and we expect that gulf to reflect on the scoreboard here.
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*Odds correct at time of publication, thanks to FanDuel.