Well, Slovakia were about as poor as England and I was fortunate to save one stake, for which I am very thankful. Having promised to post selections for the other two games, I will do so, but the odds on my Italy bet have fallen considerably since writing these incredibly basic notes this morning. Like Slovakia I feel too lethargic to add to them !
Italy -1.5 goals 2.07 SBO
These two teams met in a friendly almost exactly a year ago, the match was played in horrendous conditions, which Italy were very uncomfortable with, they fielded a number of fringe players and fell behind three times, before eventually winning 4-3. They had about as much go against them in that match as is possible in a meaningless fixture, yet still won, there is a tremendous gulf in class between the two teams and with a full strength line up bar Buffon and Pirlo, or as near as Italy get to it under Lippi, the World Champions should really win this with a degree of comfort, that would leave them with options, which the Italians always like, in their final group start. NZ over performed in their opener and will give 100% today, but they have had their day in the limelight, they have maybe three players that could play at the top level, only one that currently does, the rest are mainly playing in the Australian A League and a couple do not have a club at all at present, most would struggle in the third tier of english football.They had to do a lot of running in their opener and also today to keep pace with an opponent ranked 73 places higher by FIFA, they are certain to tire after the break, they meet quality opponents maybe once per year and twice in five days is going to catch up with them, Italy by at least two.
Both teams to score 2.10 general quote.
Ivory Coast have made it clear that they will play for a point and take their chances against North Korea in their final group start. However, Brazil are now very comfortable in Johannesburg, where this squad have now started four games and their were glimpses in their opener that Robinho is close to his very best and that this team is ready to step up a level at any time. If they score, the Ivorians will have to open up and of course in Didier Drogba, who will start today, they have a world class striker who will relish this battle and the chance to prove himself on this big stage. I thought they performed well in their opener, restricting Portugal to mainly long range efforts and with a greater cutting edge up front, could cause Brazil problems today, this is another match were I expect both to score and that will be my selection.