Today is Super Sunday at the Euros! Fair to say this is the best day so far?
Belgium v Portugal looks a cracker, and I know we’ve had good games in the groups but the third-place rankings take away the importance for me. It’s balls to the wall time now.
Yesterday was a great start to the last 16 stages with Denmark winning and no early goal in the Italy game. Shame Italy couldn’t get the win in normal time though! That meme with Bale and Ref in stoppage time was classic!
After what happened Denmark so early in the tournament, all of a sudden they actually have a decent chance and are playing some good football. They are into 15.5 in the Outright Market!
We have two excellent games today:
- Netherlands v Czech Republic
- Belgium v Portugal
Netherlands v Czech Republic @ 5pm
If you’ve read the blog for the group stages, you will know that we haven’t targeted many trades on the Netherlands games. There is good reason for that too, as nothing really appeals looking at the Netherlands stats. Sometimes the best trade is no trade! Given the open nature of the Netherlands games, you definitely want to avoid trading unders, scalping or time decay here IMO. They got to 0-0 at HT against Ukraine in their first game, but then we saw five goals in the second half! Their xG figures have been very impressive going forward, but they do have issues at the back and for that reason, I’m keen to just watch their games in the first half.
Important to note; just because I’m keen to avoid unders doesn’t mean I fancy overs. The Czech Republic are very average, and their xG figures are 1.25, 1.63 and 0.46 for the tournament. They didn’t deserve to beat Scotland looking at xG. Against a better side at the back, I would fancy them not to score but Netherlands do have their problems at the back. My trading angle into this game will be waiting for some stalling points and getting on the Netherlands, who look massive at 1.73. They should totally outclass Czech Republic. As I’ve said before, I’m not a fan of trades where the market naturally works against you (naturally lol!) so this will be about picking the right moments to get on the Netherlands.
Also in general, we will always have interesting angles to trade in knockout games. The late strategy from the Football Course is always worth checking in-play, along with most of the second half strategies because teams will need to do something, either hang on for a draw or score etc. It’s only natural to have more trading opportunities in games like this which is ideal for the next few weeks.
Belgium v Portugal @ 8pm
This is the highlight of the Euros so far. I’ll be watching the pre-off market like a hawk here. Belgium hasn’t really been supported before their games, granted they have had some changes but de Bruyne started the game against Finland. I’m not sure Eden Hazard is a loss really; he looks unfit. France got smashed up pre-off before their game with Portugal too; so I’m not quite sure what way this market goes. I’ll be following the volume closely, especially around the team news. In terms of in-play trading, I definitely don’t want to be trading unders or trying to scalp on the way down here. Portugal has had many goals in their last two games, and Belgium has some world-class attackers. I’d rather miss a trade and watch a 0-0 than getting invested here as I don’t see an edge.
I’ll mostly be aiming to react to possible overreactions on goals here and looking for some possible accelerated time decay in the second half, depending on the situation. I expect Belgium to win in the end, but they were poor in the first half against Denmark and Portugal played well against France. They created an xG of 2.36. I think Portugal are a little underrated in this tournament judging by their prices against Germany and France, but I’m a huge fan of Belgium so I’ll be slightly favouring them in the market. This is definitely a game where I want to see what happens and react rather than have a fully set plan, because nothing stands out pre-off.