Belgium vs. Italy – European Championship, July 2, 2021

| July 1, 2021 6:53 am PDT

With some of the favorites already knocked out of the competition, this looks to be the game of the round as Belgium and Italy meet in Munich to decide who makes it through to the last four.

Both sides progressed to the knockout stages with a 100% record before finding their round of 16 opposition more demanding. Now one of them must lose, and I’m going to take a look at how this eagerly anticipated game might go. Read on for my Belgium vs. Italy betting pick.

Will the Golden Generation Deliver at Euro 2020?

Belgium hardly missed a beat in the group stage. Russia, Denmark, and Finland were all fairly easily dispatched, with only the Danes causing some worry by scoring the early goal at an emotional Parken Stadium in Copenhagen.

The real test for Roberto Martinez’s side came in the round of 16 when it came up against Portugal. But Belgium’s defense had only conceded one goal up until that point and was able to withstand a barrage of chances from Ronaldo and company. The attacking players usually get all the credit in this team – but it was the defenders that won the day.

Now the Red Devils come up against an Italy side that is not as defensive-minded as in previous tournaments, but one that will still put up a good fight.

A lot will depend on the availability of Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne – both injured against Portugal – but there is still a lot of talent in this squad.

Can Italy Continue to Excite at Euro 2020?

Italy has enchanted everyone since the opening fixture of Euro 2020 and was able to come through a much sterner test against Austria in the round of 16 to now face Belgium. Roberto Mancini has done away with the stereotypical defensive tactics of the past while still retaining an impressive backline – and it has worked wonders so far.

The attacking speed of players such as Federico Chiesa has worried opponents all tournament long, and Mancini will hope that Belgium will find that difficult to cope with too.

He will be aware that Belgium will not allow Italy to play at its desired tempo – so this one could be a little more attritional than the Azzurri games we have seen so far.

Austria really worried Italy in the previous round and may have even won the game if Arnautovic’s goal was not ruled out for offside. Now the midfield will need to step up and not allow Belgium to take control of this quarterfinal. Jorginho is just the man to do that, but he will need some help from his teammates if Italy is going to keep up with this grand adventure.

Belgium vs. Italy Odds and My Betting Pick

Belgium to Win+242
The Draw+215
Italy to Win+135

Although the prices from BetOnline are close here, I am surprised that Belgium is not the favorite to win this game. The Red Devils have been strangely unfancied by the bookmakers throughout this tournament, and this looks like an excellent opportunity to take advantage of some very good value odds.

Italy has looked very impressive so far – and didn’t even concede a goal in the group stage – but Belgium has played just as well, in my opinion. Injuries are a worry for Roberto Martinez, but I’m not sure that even the famous Italian backline will be able to deal with Romelu Lukaku. He has tormented Serie A defenders all season and could repeat the trick on an international stage on Friday.

The one thing I don’t expect at the Allianz Arena is goals, though. This is likely to be a far cagier affair than some of the knockout games so far, and a single goal could win it in the end. I’m backing Belgium to be the team celebrating at the end.

Pick
  • Belgium to Win
    +242
Dan Roberts
Dan Roberts

Dan Roberts is an experienced freelance writer specialising in sports and sports betting. He is particularly knowledgeable about world soccer, but also writes about football, basketball and cricket.

As a fan of Nottingham Forest, New York Knicks, Minnesota Vikings and New York Mets, Dan has not had much to celebrate recently.

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