Group J favourites Italy face minnows Liechtenstein in EURO 2020 qualifying action on Tuesday. It has been a mixed bag for Roberto Mancini since taking the Azzurri helm while the Blues-Reds seek only a fourth victory in four years of matches.
Where and when: Stadio Ennio Tardini, Parma – 26 March, kick-off 19:45
Where you can see Italy vs. Liechtenstein: Sky Sports red button
Last time: Italy thrashed Liechtenstein 5-0 when the nations met in World Cup qualifying for the showpiece event in Russia. It was a night to remember for forwards Lorenzo Insigne, Andrea Belotti, Eder, Federico Bernardeschi and Manolo Gabbiadini who all got in on the act.
Liechtenstein to score
|Time of first goal: 11-20||5/2||Offer|
|Italy to win 2-0||11/1||Offer|
Italy vs. Liechtenstein Predictions and Preview
Hosts Italy will want to lay down a marker when rank outsiders Liechtenstein visit Emilia-Romagna. The Azzurri are in the midst of a rebuild with World Cup winners Gianluigi Buffon, Andrea Barzagli and Daniele De Rossi retired from the international scene. The experienced trio formed a formidable spine for a decade but Mancini will be thankful he still has Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci to help usher in a new era.
The Juventus centre-half pairing are arguably the best combination on the continent and will be joined by Alessio Romagnoli in a back three. The Milan skipper has enjoyed an outstanding season at club level and visibly grown in to the role of Gennaro Gattuso’s leader.
Further forward, competition for places is fierce with Jorginho, Marco Verratti, Nicolo Barella, Stefano Sensi and Lorenzo Pellegrini battling it out for the three midfield spots and Mancini will be buoyed by the accomplished technicians at his disposal.
Fabio Quagliarella should come in to contention. The Sampdoria hitman leads the way in the goalscoring standings in Serie A ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and Duvan Zapata and merits his call-up.
The Neapolitan is 11/10 to net anytime during the encounter, while strike colleague Leonardo Pavoletti, another expected substitute, is 8/5 in the same betting. Italy are the overwhelming favourites at 1/33 to clinch all three points and 1/6 to score in both halves.
Visitors Liechtenstein are a mighty 97/1 to pull off a shock result and 36/1 to claim a point. The 181st ranked side will be relying on Dennis Salanović to lead the way and the attacker is 15/1 to open the scoring.
One to watch for Italy: Moise Kean is one of the promising young guns introduced to the senior setup and the Juventus forward is one to keep an eye on. Kean is 9/2 to register the last effort of the contest.
One to watch for Liechtenstein: Noah Frick is 33/1 in the same market and it would be a moment to remember for the talented 17-year-old debutant.
Long shot: Italy’s embarrassing World Cup failure has not been forgotten and the players owe it to their loyal supporters to put in a show-stopping performance. A 5-0 rout is priced at 5/1 and would be a step in the right direction for Mancini’s group.