On the final match day of Group C it may look like Ireland has nothing else to play for, but that is not exactly the case. While they are not able to advance out of the group, they can play the role of spoiler and potentially prevent Italy from advancing. Like their other 2 games it is going to be a tough go for the Irish as they face a strong Italian squad. The Italians are coming into their 3rd match having tied in their matches against Spain and Croatia. They need to secure a win against Ireland and hope that Spain beats up on Croatia if they want to advance. It is an interesting match and you really cannot ask for much more than that on the final day of group play in Group C.
Ireland has been struggling all tournament and it shows in their dismal results. When they played Spain it looked as if every Irish player was simply standing an watching the Spanish players put on an exhibition. Before that Croatia surprised the Irish and put them in to a -2 goal differential hole. Coming in to this year’s Euros it was clear that Ireland had slim chances to advance, but nobody thought that it would have gone this badly. Robbie Keane, the Irish captain has failed to do much of anything for his country and his play looks poor to say the least. Aiden McGeady is a lone bright spot as he held down the midfield and created mostly all of the few chances that Ireland had. Shay Given looks like he is having a terrible tournament, but when he has to face in upwards of 20 shots on target it is never going to be easy to keep them all out.
Italy has everything to play for even now. Their two 1-1 draws are not bad at all considering their opponent and they have left the Italians with their own fate essentially in their hands. The only thing really holding the Italians back is their lack of goal scoring. Most people anticipated Mario Balotelli would put on a show at the 2012 Euros, but that really has not been the case. If the Italians can take advantage of their chances more often they can be a dangerous team to play against.
Bovada.lv has Ireland as a huge underdog as they sit at +1000 on the moneyline. The Italians are favored and because of that are sitting at -375 on the moneyline. A draw does not seem likely and is currently at +475.
All things considered I think that the Italians are going to get the result. It has been too long since Italy has really made an impact in Euros and this is the year that they and their fans want to change that. We may see a few lineup changes but expect a strong Italian side to score 2 or 3 goals against an Irish team who is simply outmatched yet again.