Croatia are currently at football betting odds of 4/5 with bwin to make the quarter-finals of Euro 2012 following their 1-1 draw with Italy, which has left Group C wide open heading into the final round of fixtures on Monday.
After a first half dominated by Italy, Croatia were much improved in the second period and Mario Mandžukić’s third goal of the tournament cancelled out Andrea Pirlo’s stunning first-half free-kick and took Croatia’s tally to four points.
Spain usurped them at the summit of Group C after their 4-0 demolition of the Republic of Ireland in the late kick-off and they are overwhelming favourites at odds of 1/50 to make the knock-out stages after their imperious display against the Irish.
The holders face Croatia on matchday three and with Italy up against the already eliminated Ireland, Cesare Prandelli’s men are slight favourites to qualify ahead of the Vatreni at odds of 7/10.
|World Cup Qualifiers - European Zone - Group A|
But as we know in the world of football, things aren’t always what they seem.
Despite Spain’s dominance in recent years, it must be noted Croatia are unbeaten in the group stages of the Euros since losing 4-2 to a Wayne Rooney-inspired England back in 2004 and will have confidence in themselves.
On top of that, Italy have failed to beat Ireland in their last three meetings, including a 2-0 friendly defeat last year and two draws in qualification for the 2010 World Cup.
And with Giovanni Trapattoni’s reputation wounded, you wouldn’t bet against the old Italian master thwarting his homeland.
At odds of 4/5, Croatia could be a sensible choice for the quarter-finals and any new customers using their free £25 bet could expect returns of £45 for Slaven Bilić’s side reaching the knock-out stages.
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