(Image: POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Is it coming home? Sign up to our England Euro 2020 email updates to find out!
Invalid EmailSomething went wrong, please try again later.Sign UpWhen you subscribe we will use the information you provide to send you these newsletters. Your information will be used in accordance with ourPrivacy Notice.Thank you for subscribingWe have more newslettersShow meSee ourprivacy notice
Ten goals in matches against Slovakia and Croatia suggested Spain had finally found their shooting boots in Euro 2020 but Luis Enrique’s side regressed back to profligacy against Switzerland and that spells trouble against Italy on Tuesday.
Spain posted an xG of 3.8 in their quarter-final tie but a combination of inspired goalkeeping from Yann Sommer and wasteful finishing meant that they were unable to add to Denis Zakaria’s eighth minute own goal.
Spanish prospects of advancing past Italy rest largely rest on whether they are able to finish the chances they create – chances that might not be as plentiful against such a solid defensive unit as the Italians, placing even more pressure on the likes of Alvato Morata to make the most of what openings come his way.
Spain are 21/10 chances to win this game in 90 minutes, while the Italians are narrow 29/20 favourites. It is 11/5 that we will require extra time.
Get Italy v Spain semi-final odds with Grosvenor Sport
Spain must also cut out their defensive errors, not least from goalkeeper Unai Simon, whose propensity to drop a clanger remains an issue.
Italy toughed it out against the world’s number one ranked team, winning their 15th successive match and extending their unbeaten run to a remarkable 32 games.
That 2-1 victory came at a cost because the Azzurri lost influential left-sided attacker Leonardo Spinazzola, who has been outstanding in this tournament.
However, Roberto Mancini’s side still have more than enough attacking ammunition to stretch the Spanish rearguard and Spain could be in trouble if Italy get their noses in front.
Even Belgium, with offensive prowess that included Romelu Lukaku and Kevin De Bruyne, couldn’t break Chiellini and Co in open play.
With the likes of Chiellini and Bonucci throwing their bodies on the line, Spain won’t find it easy to break down the blue wall so Mancini’s side look a spot of value to qualify without conceding.
Italy to win to nil or Italy to win and both teams to score NO – 29/10