Portugal meet qualification foes Denmark in a must-win Euro 2012 clash and former Manchester United forward Cristiano Ronaldo is priced at 4/1 with bwin to open the scoring in Wednesday’s game at Arena Lviv.
Paulo Bento remains confident that his side can progress to the quarter-finals despite the narrow defeat to Germany in their opening Group B fixture, but he will know that he needs a big performance from his star man if they are still to be in the hunt on matchday three.
Ronaldo was reduced to long-range efforts against the Germans on Saturday evening but still looked extremely bright and if Portugal can expose some holes in the Denmark defence, then you have to fancy the Real Madrid man to be presented with chances in front of goal.
Whether a teammate creates it or he fashions an opportunity for himself with a moment of brilliance, odds of 4/1 for Ronaldo to break the deadlock look tempting.
Should Ronaldo score first at these odds, punters would win £125 if they used the free £25 bet available to new customers who register with bwin to back him.
Having already pitted their wits against each other in the qualifying stages for Euro 2012, the Danes know all too well the threat that Ronaldo brings. In both fixtures, Portugal’s main man bagged a goal and he will be looking to make it three in three against the Scandinavian side.
The price for the Portugal number seven to notch at any time during the game is 11/10, and this should be snapped up if you’re not convinced that the 27-year-old will break the deadlock.
Morten Olsen’s side enter Wednesday’s clash knowing that three points will near enough secure qualification for the quarter-finals.
The Danes know all too well the threat that Ronaldo brings. In both fixtures, Portugal’s main man bagged a goal and he will be looking to make it three in three against the Scandinavian side.
And following a hard-fought (and largely unexpected) victory over the Dutch on Saturday afternoon, they will not fear Portugal, especially as they have only lost to their opponents once in their last five encounters.
Furthermore, a victory over Portugal on the final matchday of qualifying ensured the Danes pipped Bento’s men to top spot and an automatic route into this summer’s finals in Poland and Ukraine.
On that day, Michael Krohn-Delhi opened the scoring and having netted the only goal as they defeated Holland 1-0, he is certainly a man in form. Odds of 8/1 for him to score first again could entice punters looking for a longer shot.
One man who is better known to the English public is the enigmatic Nicklas Bendtner and although he sometimes appears to be completely disinterested, the Arsenal man seems to love playing against Portugal.
Four goals in four fixtures is an impressive record and as Wednesday’s match will be his 50th cap for his country, he would love to mark the milestone with a customary goal against the Selecção.
Odds of 7/1 are on offer for Bendtner to score the game’s first goal and the striker, who bagged eight goals while on loan at Sunderland last season, is 2/1 to score at any time.
Other than Ronaldo, Portugal’s main goal threat is the man who is trying (unsuccessfully so far, it has to be said) to fill his boots at Old Trafford – Nani.
In all honesty though, only Lionel Messi could do that job and Nani has attributes akin to his Portuguese teammate that scare most defences.
The former Sporting Lisbon winger scored twice in a 3-1 success over the Danes in October 2010 and bwin customers can get odds of 25/2 for Nani to bag a brace.
The likelihood of goals aplenty though is slim, so it could pay to simply back Nani just to find the net at generous odds of 2/1.
However, it’s tough to look past Ronaldo, who you feel simply has to answer his country’s call for a hero to keep their Euro 2012 dream alive.
Recommended bet: Cristiano Ronaldo to score @ 11/10
Outside punt: Cristiano Ronaldo to score first goal of the game @ 4/1
Long shot: Nicklas Bendtner to score first goal of the game @ 7/1
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