Kick-off: 1945, 28/03/2023
Stadium: Cardiff City Stadium
TV: Viaplay Sports
Wales made a very promising start to their Euro 2024 qualifying campaign when drawing away to Croatia and are hot favourites to see off Latvia.
The Dragons are up to 19 in the world rankings, whereas their opponents are way down at 129, so this should be a routine win.
We like 11/4 for a home victory by exactly two goals for our first Wales vs Latvia prediction.
Split draw ‘feels like a win’
Wales have qualified for the last two European Championships, famously making it as far as the semi-finals in 2016.
They also secured a place at Qatar 2022 for a first World Cup appearance since 1958, so this is very much a team playing with confidence.
The Dragons looked to be heading to an opening defeat in Group D after Andrej Kramaric had given World Cup semi-finalists Croatia a 28th-minute lead in Split.
However, Ipswich striker Nathan Broadhead, winning his first cap as a 64th-minute substitute, levelled in the third minute of stoppage time.
That was a welcome surprise after Rob Page had taken off skipper Aaron Ramsey, Daniel James and Harry Wilson with this game in mind.
“We had a target for the points we wanted to get, it’s all about the home game for us,” commented Page.
“That was the winnable game and we always knew that on the hour we were going to make those substitutions.
“It’s beneficial to keep them fresh now for Tuesday, but when you get the equaliser like we did late on in the game, it feels like a win.
“I think the lads deserved it for the effort they put in, they put a right shift in.”
With Gareth Bale now retired, Wales may have to settle for some solid, rather than spectacular, performances.
They do still look hard to break down, though, so Wales vs Latvia odds.
Wolves usually struggle for goals
Latvia warmed up for this contest with what would appear to be an encouraging 3-2 loss to Republic of Ireland in Dublin.
The Wolves trailed 2-0 inside 20 minutes but fought back bravely to be level at half-time, only for Chiedozie Ogbene to grab a 65th-minute decider.
However, there was a feeling that Latvia’s goals came out of the blue and in a manner they may struggle to replicate on a regular basis.
Roberts Uldrikis blasted a 30-yard thunderbolt past keeper Caoimhin Kelleher and then Arturs Zjuzins repeated the dose after his shot clipped Nathan Collins and sped into the net.
The visitors did manage away draws against Turkey, Norway and Montenegro in World Cup qualifying, so they shouldn’t be underestimated.
Let’s not forget, though, that they lost nine of 10 Euro 2020 qualifiers, with just three goals scored during that campaign.
They are 21/10 to be trailing 1-0 at half-time here and that is added to our Wales vs Latvia betting tips.
Croatia 1-1 WALES – Broadhead
Republic of Ireland 3-2 LATVIA – Uldrikis, Zjuzins
Head-to-head: Latvia 0-2 Wales
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