Preview and Prediction
The opening round of this year’s UEFA Nations League A Group 1 seems to indicate a tight rivalry among Italy, Netherland and also the two dark horses Poland and Bosnia. The favourites, Gli Azurri and De Oranje had to struggle to secure points last weekend. No wonder that this exciting encounter between these two in Johan Cryuff Arena will be even tougher as both aim for maximum points here to improve their campaign.
Both teams’ latest news
Virgil Van Dijk and Co did manage to win over Poland last weekend by a single goal of Steven Bergwijn. However, their form was still not considered satisfactory. Their attack was quite predictable relying on crosses from both flanks plus long shots attempts. Thus, such tactic might be easily anticipated again.
Meanwhile, Italy even had more disappointing result while hosting Bosnia. They were held in a 1-1 draw. They were one goal behind as Edin Dzeko opened the scoring. Fortunately, Stefano Sensi’s deflected shot found the back of the net. Yet, Lorenzo Insigne and Co failed to score more.
The caretaker Dwight Lodeweges might not change the winning team with the similar 4-3-3 formation. Memphis Depay will lead the attack with Spurs man Steven Bergwijn and Quincy Promes on the side. Frankie De Jong will still be the anchor of the midfield.
Meanwhile, Roberto Mancini tends to count on offensive football instead of relying on their classic pragmatism. He does make use of the local attacking talents by employing 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1. Ciro Immobile should be opted for the starting IX after the less impressive form of Andrea Belotti, while on both wings, Lorenzo Insigne and Stefan El-Sharawy could be given a chance instead of Federico Chiesa who wasted several opportunity in the previous game.
Players to watch
De Oranje’s key men are certainly Lyon forward Memphis Depay, Barcelona midfielder Frakie de Jong plus Manchester United new signing, Danny Van de Beek. Another important figure of the team is Tottenham winger who scored in the only goal in the previous game, Steven Bergwijn.
The European top scorer in 2019/2020 season, Ciro Immobile, is expected to be the main scorer. The Lazio man has registered 10 goals in 39 caps. Some other notable names to watch are the Inter Milan duo, Stefano Sensi and Nico Barella. However, Udinese captain, Kevin Lasagna or possibly Francesco Caputo could come off the bench to break the deadlock.
Netherlands vs Italy Prediction
A victory on the first match should boost the Dutch side confidence to take on Roberto Mancini’s men. However, such is none without their tactical improvement. Both teams seem to play the identical approach, which could eventually end the game in a tie. Unless either of them deploys stunning tactics, a draw is inevitable.
Neither side is the favourite in this clash. Chiellini and Co are projected to win at 3.40, whereas Holland’s odds to win are at 2.25. The draw result is at the value of 3.20.