Go Big or Go Home
There are only two spots left for the 2022-23 UEFA Nations League Final Four, and one is for the winner of Tuesday’s match between Portugal and visiting Spain. Well, a draw is also enough for Portugal as the Navigators sit atop League A Group 2 with a two-point advantage over Spain.
La Roja, who played in last edition’s Grand Finale, have no other option than to win. The good news, for them, is that they remain unbeaten when playing on the road. Even so, as expected, the home side dominates the soccer lines for Tuesday’s do-or-die matchup.
Portugal: Well-Balanced Squad
Last Saturday, Portugal visited the Czech Republic and won 4-0. I hope you followed our advice of wagering on the over 2½ at +105. Diogo Dalot was named Man of the Match after scoring a brace. Bruno Fernandes and Diogo Jota also scored. What about Cristiano Ronaldo? Well, he ended up with a bleeding nose, literally.
Cristiano Ronaldo. 🤕 pic.twitter.com/NFq68Dblpa
— Actu Foot (@ActuFoot_) September 24, 2022
Anyway, that result is the reason why the Navigators depend only on themselves to qualify for the tournament’s semifinals. As mentioned before, even a draw would be enough to seal the ticket.
Portugal has been flawless when playing at home. First, they crushed Switzerland 4-0 with CR7 as the Man of the Match after scoring a brace. Joao Cancelo and William Carvalho also scored. Later, they defeated the Czech Republic 2-0 with Cancelo and Goncalo Guedes as the scorers.
As you can see, we’re talking about a well-balanced squad, in which it doesn’t matter if you’re a striker, a defender or a midfielder. Everyone is capable of scoring. No other team in the group has scored more goals than the Navigators with 11. As if that wasn’t enough, no other team in League A has allowed fewer goals than them with two.
Those numbers and the +130 price that they’re offering in the sportsbook makes them too good a deal not to take, but let’s see what Spain has to offer.
Spain: No More Experiments
Spain also played last Saturday. La Roja was the betting online favorite to defeat Switzerland, but the Red Crosses managed to pull off the stunner. That’s right, they won 2-1 with goals scored by Manuel Akanji and Breel Embolo, both from a corner kick. Jordi Alba scored for Spain.
Head coach Luis Enrique was heavily criticized for playing Marco Asensio, Ferran Torres and Alba from the start. The three of them barely play at their clubs. Offensively, Borja Iglesias, who has scored six goals in La Liga, and Carlos Soler, who recently signed for PSG, were considered much better options than Torres and Asensio. There’s also Alvaro Morata, who’s the top scorer of Atletico Madrid.
The three of them, alongside Pablo Sarabia, should start in Braga. As mentioned before, La Roja has no other option than to win. Therefore, no more experiments, they must go all-in right from the start.
Span remains undefeated when playing on the road. First, they drew 2-2 to the Czech Republic thanks to a late goal scored by Inigo Martinez. They came from behind twice. Later, they defeated Switzerland 1-0 with Sarabia as the scorer.
As if that wasn’t enough, they’re offering a +230 price, meaning a $100 wager could turn into a $330 payout.
Portugal vs Spain Head-to-Head
- Previous Matches: 39
- Portugal Victories: 6 (45 goals)
- Spain Victories: 16 (76 goals)
- Draws: 17
The first leg between these two was in June at Estadio Benito Villamarin in Seville. Alvaro Morata scored the opener por Spain during the first half, while Portugal was able to even the score thanks to Ricardo Horta, who came off the bench and scored in the 82nd minute. It was a very physical matchup as the referee ended up showing eight yellow cards in total.
Their last meeting in Portugal was in 2020 and it ended with a goalless draw. In fact, the hosts are unbeaten (2-1-0) in three home matches against La Roja.
Portugal vs Spain Match Information
- Date: Tuesday, Sept. 27
- Time: 2:45 p.m. ET
- Location: Braga Stadium, Braga, Portugal
- Portugal vs Spain Live Stream: fuboTV
Portugal vs Spain Betting Lines
Portugal vs Spain Prediction
Yes, Spain is a very tempting underdog, but Portugal’s attacking unit is even better when playing at home. In their last 10 home games, they averaged 2.6 goals per match. After all, we’re talking about Ronaldo, Jota, Fernandes, Rafael Leao and Bernardo Silva playing together. Spain’s defensive unit isn’t bad but lacks chemistry. Therefore, I believe Portugal will score more than 1½ goals, which is precisely my soccer prediction.
Score Prediction: Portugal 2, Spain 1