ALEX JONES (@AlexJ0nes9) analyses the odds as Finland and Belgium lock horns in Group B at Euro 2020 on Monday.
Finland vs Belgium | Monday 21st June 2020, 20:00 | BBC
The culmination of Group B sees Belgium and Finland lock horns in Saint Petersburg with the former already qualified, and Finland needing a win here to join them.
No one expected Finland to get out of this group, but they did give themselves a massive chance when they beat Denmark in the opening round.
Belgium played a stereotypical game of two halves on Thursday, as their first half display in Copenhagen deserved defeat but after the introduction of Eden Hazard and Kevin De-Bruyne, The Red Devils entered the higher gears.
With Roberto Martinez’s men trading at the 1/3 mark the bookies are suggesting Belgium have a 75% chance of success in Saint Petersburg and that looks hard to dismiss.
I’m sure they will want to win the group despite already being qualified and I’d expect the likes of De Bruyne to get some match fitness ahead of the latter stages.
Belgium boasted 66% of the ball against Russia and that looks likely to be a similar statistic come Monday evening. There were no cards that day and with the gam unlikely to be stretched, we should see a low card count.
Over the course of Matchdays 1 and 2 at Euro 2020 we have seen just 2.66 cards per game dished out, with 17/24 (71%) games seeing under 4 cards. 11 of 24 games in MD1&2 saw under 3 cards.
Bet365 have set the Asian line on the total cards at 3.00 and I’m backing the unders at 7/10 (1.7). This bet has copped a profit in 11/24 (46%) of games and has returned a Push in 17/24 (71%) games so far. This bet only loses if 4 or more cards are delivered.
Given that Belgium are through to the knockout stages and have only picked up one card so far (in the 93rd minute v Denmark), I wouldn’t expect many cards to be dished out by referee Felix Brych.
The German official only gave one card in his first Euro 2020 game, Netherlands v Ukraine.
One shot bet I like the look of is for Finland to have under 2.5 shots on target in the match, priced at 5/4 (2.25) with Bet365.
This looks too big considering Finland have only had two shots on target at the tournament so far. They scored with their only shot against Denmark and had one SOT against Russia.
We have seen Finland struggle to create goalscoring opportunities at this tournament, so I was shocked to see this at 5/4 and not closer to even money, given that the odds imply a 44% hit rate on success.
Finland have also had exactly one shot on target in five of their last six, with this bet landing in their last 6 consecutive games.
Belgium will likely limit Finland to very few chances. Russia only had one effort on Thibaut Courtois’ net in their opener and given their ability to control games, I don’t see Finland testing the Madrid goalkeeper’s net more than twice.
Finland v Belgium – Finland Under 2.5 Shots-on-Target (5/4 Bet365)
Finland vs Belgium – Under 3 Asian Cards (7/10 Bet365)
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