After one set of games, we now have the groups beginning to take shape and we move into the second phase of matches. Everyone who wins in this particular round knows that they still have a chance of qualifying or indeed making sure that they have qualified for the Quarter Finals.
The first of tonight’s matches sees the Czech Republic play Portugal, the winner definitely through to the next round. Looking at both sides first games, Portugal will be strong favourites to win tonight and if they play anywhere near as well as they did Saturday night, then they’ll over-run the Czechs. Yet the Czechs will also know that they were fairly fortunate against a very resolute Swiss team and will be looking to give a far better account to themselves than they did.
They looked quite poor up-front though and the strikers will need to offer a lot more for them to have any chance of taking anything from the game. I’m going for a 3-1 Portugal win in this match.
The second game features Switzerland v Turkey. Both teams need to win to have any chance of having a strong chance of qualification so we should see an open game. Switzerland were a lot better than I thought they would be in the first game but couldn’t finish. With Yakin coming in for the injured Frei, they’ll have clever player pushing them forward. Turkey looked shell shocked on Saturday, they never got into the game and were quiet flattered by a 2-0 score line.
I expected a lot more from them than they showed, which really surprised me. Whilst they’re not the strongest Turkish side of recent years, Portugal made them look very ordinary and they’ll be up for showing everyone a lot more. I think the home support will be crucial tonight and I’m going to plump for a 1-0 win to Switzerland.