Armenia vs Italy
Euro 2020 Qualification
Date: Thursday, 5 September 2019
Kick off at 17:00 UK/ 18:00 CET
Venue: Vazgen Sargsyan Republican Stadium (Yerevan).
WIth two wins in a row against Liechtenstein (3-0) and Greece (3-2), Armenia are now just three points behind second-placed Finland and they will take on the group leaders, Italy, this Thursday in Yerevan.
Despite their recent revival, it’s hard to imagine that hosts, ranked 98th in the world and with just two players in the top five European Leagues, can pull another, substantially bigger surprise and beat the 4-time World Cup Winners.
‘Azzurri’ are sitting at the top of the UEFA Euro 2020 Qualifying Group J with 100% record. They’ve beaten Finland (2-0), Liechtenstein (6-0), Greece (3-0) and most recently Bosnia and Herzegovina (2-1) at Allianz Stadium in Turin.
Roberto Mancini won’t be able to count on injured Juventus duo Chiellini and De Sciglio, Lorenzo Insigne, and ‘millennials’ Zaniolo and Kean have been demoted to U21 team. Even without their main defender and exciting young talents, Italy are favorites to win with ease.
Armenia vs Italy: Head to Head
They were in the same WC 2014 Qualifying Group. Italy won 3-1 in Armenia and drew 2-2 at home in last the last round, when everything was settled. ‘Azzurri’ topped the standings back then, while Armenia finished 5th.
Armenia vs Italy: Prediction
Armenia have won several games at home against similar or lower rated teams, but one can argue they have managed to pull only two major upsets – in 2013 and 2009, when they overcame Denmark on the road and Belgium on their soil. Henrikh Mkhitaryan is obviously their main man and go-to-guy for everything.
Italian FIGC just broke the news that Lorenzo Insigne has pulled out of the squad with a muscle injury and got replaced by Vincenzo Grifo. Napoli forward is clearly a fantastic player, but Italy should prevail, nonetheless. Mancini still has quality options on the wings and up front, and with technically gifted central midfield in support, I’ll back ‘Azzurri’ to win with -1.5 handicap, and choose an away win with Under 3.5 goals, as it ‘smells’ like 0-2, 0-3 tops.
Armenia vs Italy: Bet Tips
Italy -1.5 Asian Handicap @ 1.80
Italy to win & Under 3.5 goals @ 1.95