The final night of Euro 2024 qualifying action in this international break takes place on Tuesday when four groups play out the latest matchday with the teams on show in each looking to take a step closer to qualifying for the finals in Germany next summer.
We’ve seen some good football over the course of this international window so far and with the likes of Spain, Italy, Belgium and Switzerland in action to round things off we should be treated to some more great stuff.
The runaway leaders Scotland have this round of matches off so the spotlight turns on what is currently the battle for second place in Group A. Spain will be favourites to achieve that and they look to have something of a penalty kick to take advantage of when they play host to Cyprus. Scottish eyes might well be on the other game though. That sees Norway hosting Georgia with both teams needing to win to stay relevant in the qualifying stakes. Should the match finish in a draw Scotland would be confirmed as qualifiers.
The leaders England are not on show in this group on Tuesday evening so the race in behind them gets the maximum attention and the two teams fighting it out for the other spot in behind Gareth Southgate’s men meet when the defending champions Italy look to revive a flagging campaign so far when they host a Ukraine side who will be looking to follow up a draw with England last time out. North Macedonia won’t have given up on this qualifying campaign just yet but if they are to keep their chances high then they have to win away to Malta.
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There is the potential for Group F to take a twist on Tuesday night when the teams in second and third meet. Austria begin the night in second place, four points ahead of Sweden and the two meet in Solna in what is the biggest match in the group to date and one Sweden really have to win. Belgium are starting to look like a bit of a runaway train in this section and their progress is expected to continue when they play host to an outmatched Estonia side.
The other group on show on Tuesday night is Group I where Switzerland hold the advantage heading into another pivotal evening of action. They are expected to maintain their position when they host Andorra. Romania and Israel are the other two teams battling it out for qualifying. Israel look to have the easier of the two assignments with them playing host to Belarus. Romania didn’t look fantastic on Saturday evening and might need to show improvement if they are going to get the better of Kosovo.
I watched the Israel match against Romania on Saturday evening and liked what I saw. They probably came away from Bucharest wondering how they didn’t win the game with the amount of chances they created, particularly in the second half where they were well on top throughout the contest. That draw becomes acceptable if they are able to win at home to Belarus and I fully expect them to be good enough to do that and think there is value in them covering a -1 Asian line.
Belarus have been a little more competitive in this qualifying campaign than previous ones but this feels like a tough assignment. While they have been competitive, they failed to score in Andorra on Saturday night and Israel is a much tougher place to go than that. Israel are unbeaten in their last eight competitive matches on home soil and that includes a win over Austria. Belarus haven’t won any of their last 12 away from home which includes concerning defeats in Estonia, Azaerbaijan and Kazakhstan. I expect a comfortable Israel win here.
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