Italy v Uruguay: History guiding this winner takes all clash

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In musical chairs, as soon the game gets down to the final chair a mad scramble between the two remaining contestants is par for the course.

Italy and Uruguay will be the footballing version of those madcap adolescents as they try to join Costa Rica in the last 16.

As the limbs flail and the fingernails claw at the seat to try and claim it as their own, we’ve picked out the best three bets for the encounter:

Italy to win @ 17/10

In beating England last time out Uruguay not only enhanced their chances of advancing to the knockout stages, but also ended a 44-year hex at the World Cup. Before Luis Suarez’s double, the country hadn’t beaten a European side since the 1970 tournament.

However, they haven’t claimed successive European triumphs since 1954, while Italy are in the middle of a 10-game unbeaten streak at the World Cup against sides from South America.

Both teams to score @ 3/4

There’s been goals at either end in both of Uruguay’s World Cup matches in Brazil and the bet would have landed in half of their last eight games of any kind.

Italy are the side that really enhance the confidence in the punt though, having played out eight games with both sides finding the net in their last 11 internationals.

First half to produce most goals @ 2/1

Three of the four goals scored in Italy’s two games at the tournament have been bagged in the first period and in their five friendlies before the tournament began there were six first-half goals struck.

Uruguay do their bit for the bet too having netted one goal before the interval in both of their previous Group D outings at the tournament.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.