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Portugal v Holland Euro 2012 Preview & Tips
Portugal and Holland lock horns on the last day of the group stages. The June 17 match starts at 19:45 GMT.
Portugal will look to ensure a trip to the knockout stages of Euro 2012 when they face the listless Dutchmen on Sunday. A Seleccao left it late against Denmark last time out, needing an 87th minute Silvestre Varela goal to register their first win of the tournament. The win catapults the Portuguese to the second spot of the table; any result will do for them as long as Denmark doesn’t win against Germany on the same matchday.
Paulo Bento has fielded the same starting eleven for two games now and it looks like there won’t be any change when they face Holland. Silvestre Varela, despite his late game heroics against Denmark, is not expected to start in this one. The two wingers ahead of him in the pecking order are looking indispensable at the moment; Nani had a man-of-the-match performance last time out while Captain Cristiano Ronaldo is an automatic feature in the line-up.
Holland is hanging on a thin thread now; the loss to Germany requires them to win this match by at least two goals with Germany winning over Denmark in the other game. Other than this it is game over for Bert van Marvijk and his team, ending tournament at a big time low without even registering a point. Who would have thought that the Dutchmen would be the unlikely victim of the Group of Death?
Van Marvijk could try out a few different combinations in here. De Jong and Van Bommel were lacklustre again in midfield, while Affellay and Robben couldn’t strut their way in front of the German defense. The Holland back-four was suffering too, as a whole, and unless they find some inspiration in the air, they will find it hard to avenge the Mario Gomez brace that killed the game – and possibly the tournament – for them. In win-or-go-home scenario like this one, expect a more attacking line-up for the Oranje.
Portugal v Holland Betting Preview
Portugal will need a win or a draw, or if they must lose, then it should be less than a two-goal margin. A win if of course the best option to ensure that they go on to the knockout phase even if Denmark surprises Germany with a win in the other fixture. Paulo Bento will surely ask his boys to be conservative here, trying to get on the scoreboard without sacrificing their defensive integrity.
Holland’s fortune is in their hands; but what destiny is asking them to do is rather difficult. Winning the game on a two-goal margin should be very hard for any team in this group, how much more if the other team is ready and set to make life tougher for them? Based on their recent showing Holland doesn’t look capable of usurping Portugal by a big margin. They do have what it takes to win this battle, and as for the war, it’s over for them as it looks.
Verdict: Holland 2, Portugal 1.
Tip: After all the disappointment, Holland still has favour on their side. They are at 2.50 to win, 9.50 to win with a 2-1 scoreline. The match is likely to go over 2.5 goals here (at 1.72) as an open second half is expected with Holland expected to push for that two-goal winning margin. They should throw caution in the wind though; an open game could only hand them bitter humiliation apart from the sorrow of being knocked out of the tournament.
Fancy Luis Nani who is at 4.33 to score anytime in this game. The Manchester United stalwart is looking lively in that right wing position. Robin Van Persie, on the other side, might just unleash his scoring boots here. He scored against Germany last time out and in this game, he is at 2.75 to score any moment.
All odds are from Bet365.com (£200 FREE BET!).