International Friendly: Italy vs Germany preview


Two of Europe's most important football nations clash on Tuesday as Italy host world champions Germany in one of the most interesting matches of the week. The two nations have met in the quarter-finals of this summer's European Championship, Germany pulled through after the penalty shootout as Mesut Ozil's opener was cancelled out by Leonardo Bonucci's equaliser. Four years ago it was Italy who beat Germany at Euro 2012 with two goals from Mario Balotelli.

Italy are unbeaten in the World Cup qualification campaign, with three wins secured and a creditable 1-1 draw against Spain. Their first high-profile friendly after Euro 2016 resulted in a loss though as France defeated them 3-1. Last week they secured a routine 4-0 victory in Liechtenstein, but Eder and Antonio Candreva picked up knocks and might not be able to play against Germany.

Germany are on a hot streak after Euro 2016, they won five games out of five, scoring no less than 18 goals and keeping a clean sheet throughout. Last week they hammered minnows San Marino 8-0, with three goals from former Arsenal youngster Serge Gnabry. Manuel Neuer, Toni Kroos and Julian Brandt have been pulled out of the squad because injury, while Mesut Ozil will also miss out.

Probable line-ups:

Italy: Buffon - Darmian, Bonucci, Romagnoli, De Sciglio - De Rossi, Verratti - Candreva, Bonaventura - Immobile, Belotti

Germany: Leno - Henrichs, Hummels, Howedes, Hector - Gundogan, Weigl - Muller, Gotze, Gnabry - Gomez

My prediction: 1-1 draw.

Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:

Italy win - 2.63
Draw - 3.30
Germany win - 2.60

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