One of the most anticipated games of the group stages should see goals at both ends when these two in form sides meet on Tuesday evening
Spain underlined their status as tournament favorites in their opening game with a 5-0 destruction of Macedonia, although a truer test of their title credentials will surely come on Tuesday evening against Portugal.
The runners-up from 2015 opened their account with a 2-0 win against Serbia to extend their unbeaten run to 15 matches and they should provide stern opposition for Albert Celades’ men. La Rojita, though, are favorites with bet365 offering them at 19/20 (1.95) for the win, while Portugal can be backed at 11/4 (3.75) and the draw is priced at 5/2 (3.50).
With only the winners of the group guaranteed a place in the knockout stages, avoiding defeat is of paramount importance, and given that the two sides are evenly matched there could be some interest in backing a draw.
Both teams to score also looks appealing at 4/5 (1.80) with Portugal netting in 14 of their last 15 games, and Spain scoring in 18 of their last 20 matches. Indeed, the temptation to back a high-scoring game increases when considering the exceptional attacking performance of Spain in their opening match and in particularly the individual showing of Marco Asensio.
The Real Madrid forward scored a stunning hat-trick against Macedonia, although it is fair to assume that a well-organised Portugal side will afford him much less space than he was given on Saturday night. Over 2.5 goals is offered at evens (2.00) and that price is perhaps conditioned by the Selecao’s strong defensive record which has seen them concede just eight goals in 15 matches.
Whether Asensio will continue to dominate the headlines with another goalscoring performance remains to be seen, but Spain have scored at least twice in five of their last seven games, and they can be backed at 10/11 (1.91) to do so once more against a tight Portugal defence. The Portuguese themselves are no slouches in front of goal, with Rui Jorge’s side having also scored in five of their last seven matches.
Croatia were the last side to score two or more goals against Spain, ten games ago in March last year, and Portugal are available at a healthy looking 12/5 (3.40) to score over 1.5 goals on Tuesday.