European Cup 2016 Qualifiers: Best Value Bets

Written by Jason Dewey for @HollywoodbetsFollow them both on Twitter and Facebook now! 

International football makes a welcome return this week as a host of European nations look to cement their qualification to the 2016 European Championships which will be held in France from 10 June – 10 July 2016.

Below I'll highlight my picks for this week's qualifying action.

Czech Republic  29/20
Draw  22/10
Turkey  18/10
The Czech’s come into this game knowing that they’ve already secured qualification to next year’s showpiece event in France after goals from David Limbersky and Vladimir Darida saw off a spirited Latvian team in their last qualifier. With this in mind, coach, Pavel Vrba may well look to tinker with his side in order to find his best combinations going forward into France next year.

The Turks, on the other hand, have it all to play for. After a comprehensive 3-0 home win last time out against a ragged-looking Dutch side, Fatih Terim’s men need to win their last two qualifiers to stand any chance of qualifying directly to the tournament as the best third-placed side.

Although the Czech’s look stronger on paper and have played some great football during the qualifiers, the Turk’s have far more to play for and look good value at 18/10.

Republic of Ireland  5/1
Draw  32/10
Germany  5/10

The Aviva Stadium plays host to a potentially mouth-watering clash between group leaders Germany and high-flying Ireland. The Germans are easily the favourites to win the tie with world-class players occupying every position on the pitch. With that being said, they were given a scare last time out against a fairly under-whelming Scottish team.

The Irish on the other hand boast the most miserly defence in their group having only conceded five times in eight qualifying outings. They find themselves on a strong run of form having not been defeated in their last six games.

While Germany are definite favourites here, I can see this spirited Irish side earning a hard-fought draw against the World Champions at 32/10.

Northern Ireland  5/4
Draw  18/10
Greece  8/5

Northern Ireland have proven to be the surprise package at this year’s qualifiers and find themselves sitting at the top of Group F above Romania and Hungary. They’ve been full value for their 17 points having only tasted defeat once away to the Romanians. Michael O’Neill’s men know that a win will see them qualify for next year’s European Championships.

The Greeks have had to endure an absolutely torrid qualifying campaign and are without a win in eight attempts. Most shockingly, perhaps, have been their two defeats to the lowly Faroe Islands who are ranked 135th in the world.

A win here for Northern Ireland will secure their qualification to the 2016 European Championships which will be their first since major tournament since Mexico ’86. Back them to put a beleaguered Greek side to the sword. 

Portugal  7/10
Draw  5/2
Denmark  4/1

Portugal currently sit at the top of Group I after winning their last five Euro Qualifiers. The Portuguese go into the tie knowing that a win will all but secure their qualification to France 2016. They will be led out by their talismanic captain Cristiano Ronaldo in front of 29,000 Portuguese fans who will expect nothing less than a victory.

The Danes have only managed 0-0 draws in each of their last two qualifying matches against Armenia and Albania and may find it difficult to break down a well-organised Portuguese defence.  They will need the outstanding Christian Eriksen to be at his brilliant best if they are to get anything out of this game. If he fires, expect the Danes to get something out of this game.

This promises to be a tight game that may need a piece of individual brilliance to separate the two teams, and Portugal have just the man to provide it. Back them to get the job done at 7/10.

Scotland  17/10 
Draw  2/1
Poland  31/20

Scotland come into Thursday’s qualifier knowing that they need a win to realistically keep their qualification hopes alive. Gordon Strachan’s men would have been bitterly disappointed to lose 3-2 at home to Germany after twice coming from behind. If they’re to get anything out of this game they will need the likes of Steven Naismith and Darren Fletcher to take any opportunity presented to them in front of goal.

Poland have a pretty solid squad but with Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski in red-hot form, they look a much more frightening proposition. Poland will be looking to secure the win that will see them book their ticket to France next year.

Poland should prove too strong for a spirited Scottish side. Back them to secure their qualification with a win at 31/20.

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