Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Prediction: Georgia vs Portugal

Verdict: Portugal win

Best Odds: 2/5

Bookmaker: Olympusbet

Looking to sign off their Group F campaign with a final statement of intent, Portugal will meet Georgia at the Veltins Arena on Wednesday night.

Georgia

Starting with Georgia, while the Crusaders might be making their maiden appearance at a major tournament this summer, they have continued to receive a string of plaudits from across the continent. Already breaking a string of records this summer and backed by an emotional support back home, Willy Sagnol’s men will certainly be relishing a famous showdown against the former European champions on Wednesday night. Putting in another rugged performance over the weekend as they eventually snatched a 1-1 stalemate against the Czech Republic, Georgia still have a mathematical chance of booking a remarkable knockout stage ticket. Although the ex-Bayern Munich coach might find his squad pencilled in as a landslide underdog at the Veltins Arena, they have proven that they can ask any of Europe’s elite some real questions.

Team News

Enjoying what has been a remarkable start to this summer’s European Championships and now finding the net in both of his opening two Group F appearances, the red-hot Georges Mikautadze will certainly play a leading role here. Heavily linked with a move away from Italian giants Napoli, attacking talisman Khvicha Kvaratskhelia will earn a 32nd international cap on Wednesday night.

Linked with a potential big-money Premier League switch this summer and enjoying a hugely impressive campaign with Spanish outfit Valencia last season, Giorgi Mamardashvili will start between the sticks here.

Portugal

As for Portugal, storming their way to this summer’s European Championships and making a major statement, the Navigators should find the mood in their camp at a real high. Only continuing to receive a string of plaudits since they appointed Roberto Martinez last year, some have even tipped the 2016 European champions as a potential dark horse contender this summer. Last seen over the weekend putting in a thumping performance as they cruised their way to a routine 3-0 romp against Turkey in rural Germany, the former Belgium boss will be calling on his superstar squad to lay down another marker here. Opening their EURO 24 adventure with a dramatic 2-1 victory against the Czech Republic on June 18th, Portugal are certainly enjoying life under Martinez’s guidance.

Team News

Already storming their way to the knockout stage, Martinez could be tempted to make a handful of changes on Wednesday night. However, although five-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo might still be waiting to open his EURO 24 account this summer, the former Real Madrid icon will spearhead Portugal’s charge at the Veltins Arena.

Picking up what was a costly booking during their 3-0 romp against Turkey last weekend, AC Milan talisman Rafael Leao will miss out here as the 25-year-old serves a one-match suspension. Benfica starlet Antonio Silva could make a first start of the summer on Wednesday night.

Key Factors to Consider

    • When Georgia and Portugal met for their only historic meeting back in May 2008, the Navigators claimed a 2-0 victory on home soil.
    • Portugal have won both of their opening two Group F appearances by an aggregate score of 5-1.
    • Despite gaining plenty of plaudits this summer, Georgia have collected just a pair of points from their previous eight appearances across all competitions.
    • Portugal won all of their 10 EURO 24 qualifying appearances last year by an aggregate score of 36-2.
    • The 2016 European champions have seen six of their previous seven appearances finish with over 2.5 goals.

    Conclusion

    Already storming their way to this summer’s European Championships and tipped as a potential title dark horse this summer, Portugal will be looking to sign off their Group F adventure with one final statement of intent. Winning both of their opening two EURO 24 appearances by an aggregate score of 5-1, Georgia certainly have a real challenge on their hands at the Veltins Arena on Wednesday night. Hit with a 2-0 loss when they met Portugal for their only historic battle back in May 2008, we are expecting a similar outcome here.

    Verdict: Portugal win

    Best Odds: 2/5

    Bookmaker: Olympusbet

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Tom Dunstan


    Formerly of The Independent, Tom has spent the past six years as one of our senior writers and betting experts. Alongside working with numerous publications from across the globe, Tom also graduated from the University of Falmouth in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Digital Media.
    Spending almost the past decade working in countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, he has also spent time featuring in sports radio. Tom can be followed on Instagram - @iamtomdunstan

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