Switzerland and Spain, the two victors from a breathtaking night of Euro 2020 action, meet on Friday in the first quarter-final.
The Swiss dispatched the tournament favourites France on penalties after a 3-3 draw, having already seen Spain see off Croatia in an eight-goal thriller.
It’s to Saint Petersburg next, then, with a place in the semi-finals, where the winner will face either Italy or Belgium.
Surprise package Switzerland will be looking to follow up their remarkable penalty shoot-out win over France when they take on Spain at the Saint-Petersburg Stadium in Russia in the quarter-finals of Euro 2020.
Spain, for their part, will just be relieved to have reached this stage, having been dramatically pegged back in their last 16 tie with Croatia, only to emerge with a barely believable 5:3 win in extra-time with much-criticized striker Alvaro Morata finally producing the goods in front of goal.
Still, despite both sides’ dramatic wins, both have shown considerable frailty in the defensive positions, and goals at both ends once again looks like the best betting angle here.
While the Spanish are rightly considered one of the favourites to go all the way to claim the title on July 11th, it would be foolish to write off a Swiss side that will be stacked full of confidence following arguably one of the greatest wins in their history.
Form Guide: Switzerland
Switzerland caused the biggest shock of Euro 2020 when they knocked the pre-tournament favourites France out in the last round. Switzerland thoroughly deserved their victory as they outperformed the World Champions and showed great character to come from 3-1 down to secure the draw which took them into extra time and eventually, penalties. Despite pulling off this fantastic result, the Swiss head into their quarter-final against Spain as the clear underdogs once again, something that may well play in their favour.
Form Guide: Spain
Spain scraped through the group stage but followed up their 5-0 demolition of Slovakia with a thrilling 5-3 extra-time victory over Croatia and now they are scoring goals, Luis Enrique’s men are being taken seriously. There are still some concerns surrounding the Spanish defence and their conversion rate but while they continue to create chances they will always be a threat. Spain will be expecting a frantic end-to-end 90-minutes, and possibly more. Against Switzerland, we don’t see either side changing their open, attacking styles when it has so far proved fruitful.
How the match could go
Both Spain and Switzerland have shown their attacking prowess and ahead of their clash in the quarters, a high scoring game is expected. However, Spain has an edge here – defensively. While they both conceded heavily in their last encounters, Spain have a much better run defensively and with their style of dominating possession, they will be favorites here. The absence of Granit Xhaka is huge for Switzerland and likely to be crucial to the final result. The Arsenal midfielder has been influential throughout the tournament and Spain are further firm favourites, if they weren’t already, with him ruled out.
Betting Tips and Predictions
Spain to qualify
Spain have scored 10 goals in the last two matches, also growing from a slow start to the competition that saw them score just once in the opening two games. They are getting at their attacking best and with two clean sheets in the four matches played, they can afford to hold the favorites’ tag going to this game. Spain are unbeaten in their last 12 matches and with better defending than what they had against Croatia, they will easily walk off with a win here. Even if the game does end in a draw after regular time, we fancy Spain as the side with better resources to advance through regardless. Bet365 have 1.35 odds, Bet9ja have 1.38 and 1xbet have 1.40.
Over 2.5 goals
Despite the last few encounters between these two countries proving to be low-scoring affairs, we’re expecting a goal-fest in their Euro 2020 quarter-final. Over 2.5 goals have been scored in five of Switzerland’s last six matches, including a 7-0 win over Liechtenstein and a 3-3 draw with France. Three of Spain’s last five fixtures have also seen at least three goals scored, with Luis Enrique’s men netting five goals in each of their last two matches. Bet9ja and Bet365 have 1.90 odds while 1xbet have 2.00.
Both teams to score: yes
Both teams have scored in four of the last seven meetings between Switzerland and Spain, including their last encounter in 2020 which ended in a 1-1 draw. Both teams have also scored in four of Switzerland’s last six international matches, including three of their four games at Euro 2020. Two of Spain’s last three outings have also ended with both teams getting on the scoreboard and their game against Croatia in the last round finishing in a 5-2 victory after extra time. In a nutshell, both sides look to have weak defences and that has played a big part in our selection today. Bet365 have 1.83 odds, Bet9ja have 1.88 and 1xbet have 1.97.
Anytime Goal-scorer (Switzerland)
Haris Seferovic was poor in Switzerland’s first two games but has sparked into life with three goals in his last two outings. The big striker comes with good value for anytime scorer and that looks a bit overpriced, given that he could easily find the back of the net once again. Bet365 have 3.75 odds for him to score while Bet9ja have 4.00.
Embolo’s only goal for Switzerland in the competition so far came in their opening game against Wales. He has been pretty quiet since then but has continued to remain dangerous upfront. His height and pace could be one to exploit, especially with the prospects of a shaky Spain backline. Bet365 and Bet9ja have 5.00 odds for him to score.
Anytime Goal-scorer (Spain)
While he has a tendency to miss glaring chances, the fact he consistently gets into the good scoring positions means Alvaro Morata should be persisted with. The Juventus forward has scored two at Euro 2020 from chances equating to 4.46 xG, and while some rightly say ‘wasteful finishing’, the fact he is always in the right place means his chances of scoring are higher than many of his teammates. Morata, playing in an attack-minded Spain side, is averaging a tournament leading 1.21 xG per 95 minutes, meaning that he is getting on the end of 3.5 big chances per game on average. If that rate continues, his chance of scoring against Switzerland is high, especially with the way the Spanish are playing. Bet365 have 2.10 odds while Bet9ja have 2.35.
Ferran Torres made a big impact in Spain’s win over Croatia, scoring once and setting up two goals. The Manchester City star has impressed so far and is even making a claim for best young player of the tournament. Asides Alvaro Morata, he is a credible option to score and value could come with backing him to find the back of the net. Bet365 have 2.75 odds for him to score while Bet9ja have 3.00.
Football Lover. All-round junkie of the beautiful game. Could be found watching football most of the time. If not he’s writing about them or making some punditry you don’t agree with. A certain bias for Arsenal and Santos FC.