Group C will come to an exciting conclusion today, Monday June 18th, as Spain takes on Croatia in 2012 EURO action. Also in Group C is Italy vs Ireland with many different possibilities for advancement. Euro oddsmakers have Spain as -225 moneyline favorites to beat Croatia (+900) with the over/under listed at 3 goals. Be sure to get your Croatia vs Spain predictions before the match kicks off.
The path to the top of the group has been the same for both Croatia and Spain; each team earned a draw against Italy and a victory over Ireland. Croatia and Spain would both advance into the next round if their game ends in a 2-2 or higher scoring draw, regardless of the result in the Italy vs. Ireland match.
Croatia defeated Ireland in their opener and in their second contest fell behind Italy in the 39th minute and were penned back for the majority of the first half. However, they pushed the action in the second half and Ivan Strinic launched a long pass from the left flank to Mario Mandzukic, who had time to control at the edge of the box and shoot in off the post. “Probably the whole country was not expecting this,” said Croatia coach Slaven Bilic. “We have a really good chance of going through.”
Manager Slaven Bilic says his team will need to be perfect and also take some chances if it’s going to match the firepower of the defending world and European champs. Croatia will look to standouts Luka Modric and Mario Mandzukic to set the tone. Mandzukic is tied for the most goals in the tournament with three. Nikica Jelavic missed training Saturday with a fever but is expect to be recovered for Sunday’s final group match.
Spain’s second game of the tournament, Fernando Torres scored a goal in each half while David Silva and substitute Cesc Fabregas added the others as Spain beat Ireland 4-0. The defending champions completed an incredible 779 passes and took 26 shots, 20 of them on goal in the dominating victory.
The Spaniards will be even stronger for this final group contest, welcoming Sergio Busquets back to the midfield following a minor foot injury.
Spain abandoned its striker-less formation for a 4-3-3 attack against Ireland and it paid off with four goals. If the defending champs get a comfortable lead, expect del Bosque to sit his stars, Xabi Alonso, Alvaro Arbeloa and Fernando Torres, who all have yellow cards and could run the risk of missing time if they get another booking. Fabregas is expected to come off the bench for the second straight game.
The Bottom Line: Spain will take the lead and sit their stars in the second half. Want to dominate the books this season with some of the best EURO Picks Experts in the business? Then sign up right now and get EURO Picks Free!
Croatia vs Spain
When: Monday, June 18th@2:45 PM EST
Pick: Spain -225
Point-Spreads recommends you make your Croatia vs Spain predictions before the match kicks off.