Portugal vs Ukraine: Holders are rated hard to oppose

Portugal vs Ukraine: Holders are rated hard to oppose

Kick-off: 1945, 22/03/2019

Stadium: Estadio da Luz

TV: ITV

Portugal have been handed what looks a pretty straightforward start to the defence of their European Championship crown when entertaining Ukraine.

The visitors, now coached by Andriy Shevchenko, are no mugs but they have always tended to struggle up front when coming up against elite-level nations.

We’re snapping up Evens for a home win to nil as our opening Portugal vs Ukraine prediction.

A Look At Portugal’s Betting Odds

Portugal under-performed at last summer’s World Cup before losing out to Uruguay at the last-16 stage, but they had impressed in qualifying.

After kicking off that campaign with a 2-0 defeat in Switzerland, the Navigators rattled off nine straight wins, with 32 goals scored in those games and only a couple conceded.

The Nations League helped Portugal to get over a lacklustre Russia 2018, topping a pool that featured Italy and Poland via two wins and two draws.

With Cristiano Ronaldo back in the squad, they will now seek to hit the ground running in the race to reach Euro 2020, having upset hosts France in the final to lift this trophy four years ago.

Wolves pair Rui Patricio and Joao Moutinho, plus Porto defender Pepe, help to give this side a strong spine.

Meanwhile, the likes of Manchester City playmaker Bernardo Silva, Sevilla striker Andre Silva and Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves have come through to add fresh energy and creativity.

Looking at the Portugal vs Ukraine odds, we like 5/1 for a routine 2-0 home victory here.

A Look At Ukraine’s Betting Odds

Ukraine earned promotion to the Nations League top tier next time around by winning a B group featuring the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

However, past history points to the yellow and blues coming up just short in qualifying pools for major tournaments.

They finished third behind Iceland and Croatia in a 2018 World Cup section, taking just one point off the top two in the table.

It had been the same in Euro 2016 qualifying, with Spain and Slovakia proving too strong, as they failed to score versus that pair.

Ukraine did beat Slovenia in a play-off but then suffered three straight losses to Germany, Poland and Northern Ireland in France, drawing a blank up front each time.

Let’s finish off our Portugal vs Ukraine betting tips by taking 23/10 for the hosts to be 1-0 ahead at half-time.

Additional stats

Last result:

PORTUGAL 1-1 Poland – Andre Silva

Turkey 0-0 UKRAINE

Head-to-head: Portugal 1-0 Ukraine, Ukraine 2-1 Portugal

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