Turkey and Italy do the honours when they raise the curtain on Euro 2020 at Rome’s Stadio Olimpico on Friday evening. The waiting is over but a good start is crucial for both countries, with the Turks and Italians both coming into this opening fixture on the back of some good form.
Where and when: Stadio Olimpico – 11 June, kick-off 20:00
Where you can see Turkey vs. Italy: BBC
Last time: These countries haven’t met since 2006, when they shared a 1-1 draw in a friendly at the Gewiss Stadium in Bergamo.
Turkey v Italy Predictions and Preview
First impressions are often key at a major tournament, and that’s likely to be the case again at this unusual pan-continental European Championship. With Wales and Switzerland also taking up their place in Group A, Turkey and Italy will both want to make a strong start to their Euro 2020 campaigns.
The Azzurri will have home advantage at the Stadio Olimpico, while Roberto Mancini’s side also have the advantage in respect of their recent form. Italy come into this game unbeaten in their 27 most recent fixtures, winning 22.
That run includes victories in each of their last eight matches, where the Italians have scored 25 goals without conceding a single one. The Azzurri thrashed minnows San Marino 7-0 in their first warm-up fixture for the Euros, before coming through a sterner test against the Czech Republic on Friday with another convincing 4-0 victory.
Ciro Immobile, Lorenzo Insigne and Domenico Berardi all scored against the Czechs, and that trio will hope to retain their place for this Euro 2020 opener. Marco Verratti is a fitness worry though, as the Paris Saint-Germain midfielder continues his recovery from a knee ligament injury.
|Our Eurotips||Odds||Free bets||Bookie|
Italy to win and BTTS
Italy to win 2-1
Italy to win and over 3.5 goals
Turkey have also been in decent form recently, entering this game unbeaten in their six most recent matches. Şenol Gunes’s side have only lost one of their last 13 games, a run in which they beat the Netherlands 4-2 and Russia 3-2.
The Crescent Stars have played three friendlies in preparation for the Euros, beating Azerbaijan 2-1 before sharing a goalless draw with Guinea and beating Moldova 2-0. Italy, though are a big step up in competition, especially considering their current form.
The Azzurri are the 3/5 favourites to claim the first three points of Euro 2020 in these Turkey v Italy predictions. The Turks are 7/1 with William Hill, while you can back the draw on Friday night at 3/1.
You feel a share of the spoils would be a far better result for Turkey, who would give themselves a strong platform ahead of their second fixture against Wales. Especially given the Turks lost 2-1 to Italy in their only previous meeting at a major tournament, which was in the group stages of Euro 2000.
One to watch for Turkey: Burak Yilmaz is Turkey’s second-highest goalscorer behind Hakan Sukur, with 29 international goals to his name. The veteran forward has just won Ligue 1 in his first season at Lille, scoring 16 times in 28 games. He is 11/1 to keep his positivity going with the opener on Friday night.
One to watch for Italy: Ciro Immobile is the 19/5 favourite to break the deadlock at the Stadio Olimpico, his home ground for club Lazio. The 31-year-old netted 25 goals in 41 appearances in all competitions for the Biancocelesti last term, and he will want to improve his record of 13 goals from 46 appearances for the Azzurri this summer.
Long shot: The last two meetings between these countries have ended 1-1. They may have been in 2006 and 2002, but you can back a third successive 1-1 between the countries at 38/5. If you’re looking for big odds in these Turkey v Italy tips, try adding Immobile as the first scorer for 33/1.