Kick Off: Friday 8th June
Live on BBC1 5.00pm
Poland face Greece in the first game of Euro 2012 in front of an expectant home crowd in Warsaw on Friday afternoon, and if previous tournaments are anything to go by, we can expect a low scoring encounter as teams try to settle in to this short format competition.
Neither nation are particularly high scoring teams, and Greece are the complete opposite. Easing into the Euro 2012 betting scene, I’m going to bet on goals, or lack of them here.
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Poland are a bit of an unknown quantity at present. Being co-hosts of this competition, they didn’t have to go through the rigours of qualification, and haven’t played a competitive game since October 2009 in a 1-0 loss to Slovakia in a World Cup qualifier.
We do, however, know that Poland have quite a potent attack in the form of Dortmund striker Robert Lewandowski, backed up by team mate Jakub Blaszczykowski.
Their defence looks slightly lightweight in terms of ability, but 5 consecutive clean sheets has showed that their defence can certainly do their job.
Greece on the other hand are all about defence. It doesn’t make their style particularly attractive, but stopping goals is their forte. In fact, in their last 20 games in all competitions, Greece games have contained 3 goals or more on just 5 occasions.
Although pretty impressive in qualifying for this competition, Greece don’t score enough goals on the whole, and statistics also show that teams are hesitant to attack too much in the first game of a major tournament.
With this in mind, my biggest bet this Friday will be UNDER 2.5 goals in this game. The odds are relatively short at around 4/9, but I’m easing my way into this competition and just can’t see this bet being in trouble.
I think that Poland are well capable of progressing from this group, and if I were to guess a score line for this game it would be 1-0 to the host nation, which is a best price of 5/1.
(points based on a 1-10 scale, 10 being a max bet)