Italy vs. England Euro 2020 Final Betting Picks, Predictions: Our Staff’s 4 Best Bets (July 11)

Italy vs. England Euro 2020 Final Betting Picks, Predictions: Our Staff’s 4 Best Bets (July 11) article feature image
Credit:

Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images. Pictured: England star Harry Kane, bottom, is mobbed by his teammates after scoring a goal.

  • Global powerhouses Italy and England square off in the Euro 2020 final Sunday at Wembley Stadium.
  • The Three Lions, who are slight favorites against the Italians, have the backing from three of our four soccer analysts.
  • Jeremy Pond, Matthew Trebby, Anthony Dabbundo and BJ Cunningham deliver their best bets below for this much-anticipated championship match.

It all comes down to this moment.

Italy versus England in Sunday’s Euro 2020 final, with the winner taking home the trophy and bragging rights for being the best team on the continent.

Italy reached the championship by defeating Spain on penalty kicks after playing to a 1-1 draw through regulation and extra time. On the other side, England earned a 2-1 overtime victory against resilient Denmark.

Analysts Jeremy Pond, Matthew TrebbyAnthony Dabbundo and BJ Cunningham deliver their top selections for the much-anticipated finale. Let’s take a look at their best bets below and see what they think could be in the cards for this juicy showdown.

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Sunday’s Euro 2020 Picks

ANALYST PICK | ODDS BEST BOOK
Jeremy Pond England (-125) To Raise The Trophy BetMGM
Matthew Trebby Italy (+100) To Raise The Trophy PointsBet
Anthony Dabbundo England (-121) To Raise The Trophy DraftKings
BJ Cunningham England (-121) To Raise The Trophy DraftKings

Odds as of Saturday afternoon


Jeremy Pond: England (-125) To Raise The Trophy

It must be nice being England. The Three Lions have played five of six matches on English turf up to this point, which means this will be the sixth “home” game they get when stepping on the pitch at Wembley Stadium.

Looking at Italy, I thought it was fortunate to get a result against Spain and triumph on penalties. The advanced metrics told another story about how that game should have played out. The Italians were dominated in the numbers, losing the battle of expected goals by a 1.7-0.4 margin.

That number was glaring, considering Italy has allowed more xG essentially every game in six outings, according to FBref.com. Its first three matches, Azzurri limited their foes to 0.5 xG or less in three of the five affairs. The next three have been 1.2-1.7-1.7 in the xG category. Bottom line, that isn’t good.

When it came to possession, it was just as bad with Spain controlling the ball 69 percent of the time. That defines bizarre, considering the fact Italy had the ball no less than 50 percent in any of its other five matches, and that even share came in the second game of a 3-0 win against Switzerland.

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As for England, it looked great getting past Denmark. The Three Lions hadn’t conceded a goal prior to the match against the Danes, but I felt they were going to run into some issues. Needless to say, that’s what happened.

I think there are two factors that really work in England’s favor, with the first being its home-field advantage. Unfair or not, that’s a massive edge. Secondly, England has more attacking options. Yes, the Italians have gotten stellar efforts from Chiesa and Lorenzo Insigne, but who else can they look to for more offense at this point? Ciro Immobile has been a subpar performer so far.

In contrast, Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling have been great and the best 1-2 punch in the competition. Then you throw in Mason Mount, Jadon Sancho and 19-year-old Bukayo Sako, who created the first England goal against Italy, and you have a murderer’s row of standouts coming at the Italian defense.

I’m making two wagers for the final, with the first being England to raise the trophy at -120 odds via BetMGM and will have it as my top pick. I’m also sprinkling a little on the favorite getting +165 ML odds to win in regulation.

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Matthew Trebby: Italy (+100) To Raise The Trophy

I know this is pretty much a home game for England, but I see this matchup as an advantage for Italy simply because of its lack of true weaknesses.

Italy’s stretch of 20 consecutive wins under manager Roberto Mancini ended with the semifinal draw against Spain before advancing on penalty kicks. The Italians have had a strong defensive core that matches up well against Harry Kane’s lack of mobility, and have become an unfamiliar force going forward.

I also give Italy the edge in midfield. If one team needs to control the game and take the air out of things, I trust Jorginho and Marco Verratti to do so more than Kalvin Phillips and Declan Rice, whose duties are more focused on the defensive side of the pitch.

Italy has rarely been frustrated going forward thus far, which cannot be said about England. Manager Gareth Southgate’s men have struggled to find the back of the net as much as their talent and inferior opposition would indicate.

In what will no doubt be an extremely tight game, I’ll take an experienced Italian side to lift the trophy at a plus number.

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Anthony Dabbundo: England (-121) To Raise The Trophy

Manager Gareth Southgate’s pragmatic and “defense first” approach has almost been Italyesque in its effectiveness. It hasn’t come without its critics, especially against much weaker opponents.

However, England is an elite defensive team that just held Denmark to 0.3 xG and two shots after the halftime whistle. The Three Lions haven’t allowed many big scoring chances all tournament, with the main avenue of attack for Italy down the left flank now significantly weaker minus Leonardo Spinazzola.

Tactically, it’s much easier to find a way for England to break through Italy than vice versa, as Italy might resort to playing in Ciro Immobile and Lorenzo Insigne long as opposed to longer periods of possession and build-up. It might have worked against Spain and Belgium, but both are much worse defensive teams than this England side.

And if it’s tied late, England can bring on elite dribbler and chance creator Jack Grealish, while Italy doesn’t have that level of game-changing talent to decide the Euro 2020 champion. England is at home, it’s healthier, has been the better side in this tournament and should lift the trophy.

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BJ Cunningham: England (-121) To Raise The Trophy

England’s defense has been unbelievable throughout this tournament. It took a Mikkel Damsgaard wonder strike in the 30th minute to finally put one past Jordan Pickford. However, after the goal happened, England took full control.

Denmark had just two shots and created 0.11 xG for the final 90 minutes of the contest, which is incredibly impressive considering its offense hadn’t been held under 1.5 xG for the entire tournament. As for England, it had gotten progressively better as the event went on, creating 2.15 xG against Ukraine and 3.23 xG against Denmark. 

The Three Lions were able to control the possession against the Danes by a 55-45% margin, completed 200 more passes and were effective swinging balls into the box from the perimeter, as they had 30 crosses in the match.

Now, what Spain showed against Italy is the way to beat its defense through the middle, because Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci are really good in the air. They basically shut down any crosses that came into the box.

From an Italy perspective, it kind of showed it’s not that effective when it doesn’t have a large share of the possession, because Spain was by far the better team in that match. The Spaniards finished with a 1.74-0.78 edge in xG, which was the first time the Italians lost the xG metric in this tournament.

If England is able to hold a large share of the possession, I think it will be able to break down Italy’s defense. Also, the Three Lions don’t play a high line like Spain does, so if they don’t have a lot of possession it’s going to be much more difficult for Azzurri to create a lot of high-quality chances. 

That said, I think football is “coming home,” so I’m taking England to lift the trophy at anything up to -135 odds my top selection.

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