UEFA Nations League preview: Italy look to get back on track with Roberto Mancini in charge

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2006 World Cup winners were not in Russia this summer, but should beat Poland this Friday (7 September)

OddsharkIt has been a rough few years for Italy and their national side, but those dark times may just be behind them now. Former Inter Milan and Manchester City boss is now at the helm of the Italian ship, with the Azzurri set to kick off their UEFA Nations League campaign at home to Poland on Friday evening.

Getting the ball rolling

First things first, swing by the Oddsshark website, procure your favourite betting agency and sort out your very own account with a username and password. As a new customer and with the UEFA Nations League set for its big kick off, there should be a whole host of promotions and special offers for you to enjoy.

Where can I win money in this tie?

Robert Mancini may be the man to steer Italian football back to calmer waters, and his start in the job can be described as patchy at best. His first three games have brought just one win – against Saudi Arabia – while there was a draw with Holland and a loss against World Cup winners France.

And while Italy were not at the World Cup, Poland were, although they did not make much of an impression on proceedings. They only managed to get any points on the board once they were already eliminated; having lost to both Senegal and Colombia, they won their final group game against Japan.

Italians are famed for playing tight, tactically sound yet rigid football, but that could be all about to change under Mancini. The 52-year-old is known for a bolder, more expansive style of football and fans could be treated to some entertainment on Friday night.

In all of Mancini’s first three games in the job, both teams have scored, and you can back that outcome here at 2.25, meaning you could potentially more than double your investment. Meanwhile, a “No” to that outcome is at the shorter price of just 1.57, according to Oddsshark.

And there is no denying that it is Italy who come into this game as red hot favourites to take the points in this UEFA Nations League curtain raiser. The home side are at just 1.72 to make a winning start to the new competition, with Poland all the way out at 4.75 to do the same – a draw is priced in the middle at 3.60.

Poland have a lot of attacking quality of their own and fans could well be in for a treat. A 3-1 win for Italy is priced competitively at 17.00, meaning that a US$5 bet would lead to a whopping US$85 pay out.

Bayern forward Robert Lewandowski and Napoli striker Arkadiusz Milik are hardly slouches in front of goal, and both will fancy their chances of breaching an uncharacteristically inconsistent Italian back line. Lewandowski is at 3.00to net at any time and 6.00 to score either the first or last goal of the game, while Milik is at 4.75 to find the back of the net during Friday night’s encounter.

However, Italy have more than a few potent weapons of their own. Lazio forward Ciro Immobile is at just 2.00 to score on Friday, while Nice forward Mario Balotelli, back in the international reckoning under Mancini, is priced at 2.75 to score at any time, while he is at 5.50 to open the scoring.

Italy have conceded three goals in their last two games against Poland so the strikers may well have a field day in this one. And with neither side in particularly encouraging form, they will both be desperate to make an excellent start to the new tournament.

Keeping that in mind we could well see an explosive start in Bologna. You can back over 0.5 goals in the first 10 minutes at a price of 5.00, while Italy are at 8.50 to be ahead by the end of that time period.

However, always remember the golden rule of betting as well – the more specific your bets, the higher those potential rewards. So you could potentially more than triple your investment by backing an Italy win and over 2.5 goals in the match at a price of 3.40.

Over 2.5 goals and both teams to score is at 3.10, while you can also bet on the exact number of goals you think there will be in the game. A single goal is at 3.60, two goals is slightly lower at 3.40 while three goals comes in at 4.33.

UEFA Nations League fixtures:

Friday, 7 September

(2.05) Azerbaijan x Kosovo (3.80); draw (3.20)

(2.15) Albania x Israel (3.75); draw (3.00)

(1.70) Faroe Islands x Malta (5.75); draw (3.25)

(1.72) Italy x Poland (4.75); draw (3.60)

(7.50) Lithuania x Serbia (1.50); draw (3.75)

(1.75) Romania x Montenegro (5.25); draw (3.25)

(2.25) Turkey x Russia (3.50); draw (3.00)