Portugal Win vs Czech Republic Win or Draw
For our first write-up of the day, we have our first quarter final matchup of Euro 2012 as the Czech Republic will go up against Portugal. Now one thing I would like to clarify right away is that one of these teams has to win in order to advance because these are elimination games. However, this prop is only concerned with the first 90 minutes plus the injury time. If this game ends up being a draw after the final time, Czech Republic pickers would get the green, however the match would go into extra time in order to decide who advances. Both these teams obviously played well in their group play in order to qualify for the quarterfinals. The Czech Republic were able to win Group A on the last day following Russia’s collapse. The Czech Republic finished with 6 total points, and a record of 2-1-0. The Czech Republic ended up losing to Russia in their first game 4-1, however then were able to beat Greece 2-1 and beat Poland 1-0. On the other side, Portugal was able to advance to the quarterfinals by finishing in second place behind Germany in Group B. Just like the Czech Republic, Portugal finished with a record of 2-1-0. They opened up their Euro 2012 with a 1-0 loss against Germany, but then were able to beat Denmark and the Netherlands. Now not to take anything away from the Czech Republic and what they accomplished, but many people would argue that Portugal had to play against much tougher competition in Group B. Even though the Netherlands lost all three games, they were still one of the better teams eliminated, and if they were possibly thrown into a different group, they might have won a couple of games and potentially advanced. To go along with my point, I would like to point out that the Czech Republic were the only team to win their group, or even qualify for that matter, that had a negative goal differential. In fact, as far as goal differential is concerned, those the two teams that advanced had the worst combined goal differential of any group. This is not bashing Group A, but just showing that Group B and every other group was probably a little more competitive at a higher level of play. As for the odds surrounding this prop, Portugal is listed as the favorite at -150 over the Czech Republic at +110.
Bottomline: When you look Portugal and how they are playing right now, I really like them here. They are right now playing as a great team, with a high level of confidence. On top of that, Ronaldo was able to break his slump in their most recent game, which means the word to their fate. If Ronaldo is clicking and playing well, Portugal could be one of the best teams in the tournament. Although you do not want to overlook the Czech Republic, I feel as though Portugal should take of business today.
My Pick: Portugal