Euro 2012 Golden Boot Betting: The Group C Lowdown


Spain:

1.50 to win the group; 1.10 to reach the last 16; and 3.70 to win the tournament.

Tournament favourites Spain are sweating on the fitness of their own free-scoring major championship asset in the shape of DAVID VILLA. Latest reports suggest the Spain team doctor is “optimistic” the Barca hotshot will fully recover from a broken leg in time for Spain’s opening game with . A lot depends on his sharpness, after six months out, but in terms of pedigree, the 9.00 shot cannot be rivalled. Top scorer at the last Euros and joint top scorer at the 2010 World Cup, Villa lives for the big stage. Probably joining Villa up top for Spain will be the rejuvenated  FERNANDO TORRES, who is poor value at 12.00, but might just make an impact. Backing him up is ANDRES INIESTA at 100.00, who has only scored 11 so far for his country, but tends to save them for the bid occasion.

Italy:

4.50 to win the group; 1.62 to reach the last 16; and 16.00 to win the tournament.

The ever-functional Italians will be hoping to muster some pride after their dismal campaign at the last World Cup, when, as defending champions, they embarrassingly bombed out of the group stages. Current boss Cesare Prandelli is deliberating over whether to risk Man City outcast MARIO BALOTELLI, who can be backed at 20.00, but whose solitary international goal is in direct contrast to his ‘Why Always Me?’ mantra. Genoa’s ALBERTO GILARDINO is at 75.00, but is unlikely to start for the Azzuri. That privalige will befall Inter Milan’s GIAMPAOLO PAZZINI, who’s available at a rather disappointing 20.00, especially when you consider his tally of just 4 in 24 in the blue of Italy. 

Croatia:

7.50 to win the group; 2.40 to reach the last 16; and 50.00 to win the tournament.

Croatia are in a period of transition under the stewardship of Slavan Bilic, but will still offer plenty of enterprise in Poland and Ukraine thanks mainly to Tottenham’s midfield maestros Modric and Krancjar. Ahead of them, Arsenal reject EDUARDO will be hoping to further embellish his fine international scoring record of 22 in 44. Coming off the back of a frustrating season for Shakhtar Donetsk, the tricky Brazilian-born forward might just enjoy a new lease of life at the Euros – his Golden Boot price is a generous 100.00. Bayern Munich’s bit-part Croatian, IVICA OLIC, will partner Eduardo. His endeavour and industry cannot be faulted, but his mediocre haul of 15 goals for his 76 caps tells its own story. Back him at 75.00, at your peril.    

Republic of Ireland:

18.00 to win the group; 5.00 to reach the last 16; and 100.00 to win the tournament.

Rank outsiders Ireland would’ve fancied themselves to progress to the last 16 in any other group, and although the other three sides here are all blessed with more elaborate resources, the luck and spirit of the Irish could yet serve Giovanni Trappatoni’s troops well. Wolves’ out of form KEVIN DOYLE is rightly long odds at 200.00, but most likely to spearhead a giant-killing spurt for Ireland is their captain and all-time leading scorer ROBBIE KEANE, who’s also at long odds of 200.00, but has notched 53 goals in 115 in the green jersey. Critics will point to Keane’s lack of top-level sharpness due to his current sojourn in the LA sun. However ,his short loan at Aston Villa in January went a long way to proving he can still cut the mustard, and he’ll be intent on one last hurrah as Ireland’s penalty-taking talisman.