Spain find themselves in the unusual position of being reigning World and European Champions, favourites for the tournament and still somewhat underrated heading into the Euros.
Plenty of punters are tipping Germany, Holland and even France to do well but, in amongst the fuss to pick a team other than Spain to win, one thing keeps getting forgotten – the Spaniards remain the best team in the competition.
They may be missing David Villa and Carles Puyol but they still have anabundance of talent – particularly through the midfield – that should see them comfortably through to the latter stages.
And it’s an Italian side who have enjoyed less than perfect preparations who are first up…
Spain are 3/4 to win this clash which looks like a bet well worth taking on.
The Italians have lost their last three games against the USA, Uruguay and Russia and were incredibly disappointing in the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
However, if you fancy an upset then Italy are 4/1 to do what Switzerland did in the World Cup and defeat Spain in their opening game.
Also, it may be worth noting that two of the previous four encounters have ended with the scores level – including their meeting at the last Euros. The draw can be backed at 12/5.
Perhaps even more worrying than their three defeats in the build up to the tournament for Italy is the fact they failed to score in those games.
Backing Spain to win to nil at 7/4 may prove worth a punt.
If you want to play things a little safer though then under 2.5 goals is available at 4/7.
With Spain labouring to a 1-0 victory over China last week and just one of the previous five clashes between these teams yielding more than two goals, that could be a bet well worth taking on.