Spain and Republic of Ireland meet on Thursday evening in what is a massive game for both sides. Neither got the result they were hoping for in their first matches so will want to make a mends this time around.
Looking at Spain to begin with, they drew 1-1 with Italy in their first match of the tournament. Vicente Del Bosque chose not start a recognised striker in this encounter, instead had the likes of David Silva and Cesc Fabregas playing in a more advanced role.
Del Bosque’s men went 1-0 down in the game so it could have been a lot worse for them, but a moment of class in which Silva played in Fabregas to score secured a point.
They were far from their best but will be happy that they can still pick up the points, this time out though is a must win match.
Fernando Torres came on as a substitute but failed to convert several chances. Del Bosque will need him to find some form if they are to win their third major tournament in a row.
As for Ireland, it was a frustrating evening for them on Sunday as they went down 3-1 to Croatia.
The result and performance would have angered manager Giovanni Trapattoni as his team were left to regret sloppy mistakes in defence. After 14 games unbeaten and eleven clean sheet’s leading up to the tournament, Trapattoni would have been relying on a solid back four.
It will now be a massive test for Ireland to progress to the knockout stages as Croatia looks to be the most winnable game of the three.
They certainly will not lose hope though and will be hoping to return to being hard to beat and look to frustrate Spain and turn to the likes of Robbie Keane to provide a moment of quality in front of goal.
Spain are the big favourites to take all three points in this match. You can back them at 1.29 (2/7) with VC Bet to win their first game of Euro 2012.
After his goal last time out, Cesc Fabregas is one of the favourites to break the deadlock with odds of 9.00 (8/1) with SportingBet.
Ireland’s best chance of scoring first looks to come from Robbie Keane who can be backed at 15.00 (14/1) with Bet365.
With Spain needing a victory here they could have too much for Ireland to handle. A 4-1 win for the current champions is being offered at 23.00 (22/1) with SkyBet.