5th of July 2016 Author: Johnny Karp
The first semi-final of the 2016 European Championship takes place on Wednesday evening when Cristiano Ronaldo's Portugal take on Gareth Bale's Wales. This will be the first ever competitive match between the two nations. The two sides have only met three times before in friendly matches, two of them won by Portugal and one by Wales. The most recent of these matches was in 2000, when Portugal won 3-0 on home soil.
Portugal have the chance of reaching their second European Championship final after having lost the first one at home to Greece in 2004. They have not been particularly impressive at Euro 2016 so far, especially if you consider that they have not won any of their five matches in 90 minutes. Their three consecutive group stage draws were followed by an extra-time win over Croatia and a penalty shoot-out triumph over Poland. William Carvalho is suspended for this match, while Pepe should overcome slight fitness problems to play in the semi-final.
It has been a fairy tale for Wales so far, even though they lost in the group stage to England they are still in the tournament while Roy Hodgson and his men are long gone. The quarter-final display against Belgium was particularly impressive, Wales won 3-1 against one of the best sides in the tournament. However, two important players will be unavailable through suspension: defender Ben Davies and midfielder Aaron Ramsey.
Portugal: Patricio - Soares, Pepe, Fonte, Eliseu - Pereira - Silva, Sanches, Mario - Ronaldo, Nani
Wales: Hennesey - Chester, A. Williams, Collins - Gunter, Ledley, J. Williams, Allen, Taylor - Bale - Robson-Kanu
My prediction: Wales to win 2-1.
Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:
Portugal win - 2.20
Draw - 3.10
Wales win - 4.00
9th of June 2016
16th of November 2015
The Media made of this game Ronaldo - Bale battle but I don't think either of them was the keen player for his side so far in the tournament. Of course Bale had been a lot better than Ronaldo who is one of the biggest jokes on the tournament so far. For me Portugal are favourites because of their experience but if Wales show again their no fear style they might win this one.
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