Czech Republic vs Montenegro: home defence can prove difference
Having had to deal with the imperious Spain in their qualifying group, the Czech Republic now face an altogether more manageable task against Montenegro.
However, Montenegro did finish runners up behind England in a tough Group G but, with just three wins in their eight qualifying games so far, they will have to improve if they are to progress against the solid Czechs…
It’s the first meeting between these nations and the home side head into the clash as 8/11 favourites.
The Czech Republic have lost just two of their previous 12 home games – including a defeat against Spain – and they dispatched the Ukraine 4-0 at home back in September.
Even with Petr Cech a doubt for the game with the broken nose he sustained against Blackburn Rovers at the weekend, they should still be too good for the visitors.
Montenegro have not won for five games and have been beaten by Wales and Albania during that period. They have also won just one away game in the previous three years and are out at 4/1 to get a win in the Czech Republic this Friday.
The Czech Republic have an extremely solid home defence and have conceded just two goals in their previous five home games and both of them came, once again, in a defeat against Spain.
That game aside, they haven’t conceded more than one goal at home in well over two years.
Meanwhile, Montenegro have scored more than one goal just once in their previous nine away games, meaning this looks like being a low-scoring affair.
Backing under 2.5 goals looks well worth a punt at a very decent 8/13.