Switzerland v Poland: Defences to rule in squeaky Polish win
The 2016 European Championships really came alive in round three, but those anticipating more barnstorming action to kick off the knockout stages may well be disappointed as Switzerland and Poland do battle on Saturday lunchtime.
The Swiss, runners-up behind France in Group A, and Poland, only beaten to Group C’s top honour by Germany on goal difference, didn’t contest a single match which breached the two-goal mark in making the last 16.
Neither nation scored twice in a game, with their combined tally of three victories all being won by a single goal to nil.
Odds of 4/11 that this match ducks beneath the 2.5 goals line give a fairly substantial hint of where this last-16 tie could be heading.
Both faced a respected giant in their groups and to the credit of both defences particularly, France and Germany were held 0-0 respectively.
The match odds tell a hair-splitting story too. Having collected seven points to their opponent’s five, Poland are the wispiest of 13/8 favourites, the 90-minute draw is 15/8 and the Swiss are 9/4 chances.
Having qualified as the most prolific team to arrive at the championships, Poland and their talisman Robert Lewandowski have been strangely subdued, albeit their defence has come up smelling of roses instead.
Alongside world champions Germany, Adam Nalwaka’s side are the only other of the entire 24 who boast three clean sheets, while Vladimir Petkovic’s charges have been similarly stingy in conceding just the once.
Poland have given up just three attempts at goal from set pieces which could be key as this is the avenue which produced both of Switzerland’s tournament goals to date.
It seems to make sense that the team with theoretically more firepower and a tighter defence will prevail eventually.
A third 1-0 win of the competition for Poland is attractive at 9/2 as are the Poles to eject the Swiss after extra time at 10/1 or on penalties at 7s.
If the lid does happen to come off unexpectedly, there was a 2-2 friendly draw to point at in November 2014 and that scoreline repeated is a sizzling 20/1.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.