So, the first game of the quarter finals and we have a pretty evenly matched game here. Poland managed to see off Switzerland but not in the comprehensive way people imagine whereas Portugal continue to prove me and history right by winning matches without playing particularly well.
Poland have a very good team on paper and as predicted Jakub Blaszczykowski stepped up like he often does when Poland need a hero. It looked to everyone that they would kick on and take the game to the Swiss and knock them out comprehensively but a totally different Swiss animal came out for the second half and deservedly got back in the game late on with a superb goal from Xherdan Shaqiri. Adam Nawalka may be slightly concerned that they essentially fell apart for spells of the second half and Robert Lewandowski had yet another quiet game, although his penalty was sublime. Nawalka will have a lot to think about, not just Cristiano Ronaldo, in this game and will have to give his team a bit more steel if they're to keep Portugal out and progress to the semi-finals.
Portugal haven't exactly brought the entertainment value to these Championships, not by a long shot but they have continued their record of reaching at least the quarter finals of every European Championship they have been involved in and I'm not surprised. They always seem to find a way of winning these games and it's strangely impressive. Against Croatia it was with a 117th minute header from forgotten former wonderkid Ricardo Quaresma that broke the hearts of Croatians everywhere and propelled Portugal to this stage. There wasn't a single shot on target in this game until the 117th minute, that's an indication of just how boring it was. I hope Portugal or Poland bring a little bit more of an entertainment value to this game but to be honest, if it involves Portugal I can't see that happening. Here's to another potentially awful watch! Make sure you put a few bets on it to keep you watching!
Whether it is in the 90 minutes or in extra time or even on penalties, Portugal will find a way to win this match. Poland have looked decent during these Championships without setting the world on fire and I'm not sure that they can get past this Portugal side. I can see another 1-0 in extra time coming here.
This really is an outside punt, Poland haven't scored or conceded more than 1 goal in each game they have played so far in these Championships whereas Portugal were involved in that 3-3 thriller with Hungary in the group stage, but that was out of character so the odds on over 2.5 goals should be quite high if you fancy a punt.
I fancy Portugal to just about shade this one yet again 1-0. They have world class players at their disposal who can get them out of a jam if needs be, but I expect them to be solid and defensive for most of the game and then take what will likely be their only chance of the game late on and break Polish hearts. I would be a little bit more optimistic if Lewandowski was on form and firing but I actually forgot he was playing against Switzerland so I'm going for 1-0 to Portugal.
A small part of me hopes I'm wrong here it really does, but I expect the first half to be an absolute snooze fest. I don't know what it is about Portugal but their failure to put a decent move together seems to become contagious and then it's just watching 2 teams play terribly for 90 minutes. If this happens again, I think Portugal will win late on. Let's hope Poland can break the curse.
Nani has been on really good form during the Euro's and has even, according to Fenerbahce's President, earned himself a move to Valencia next season. I think he will score first here to continue his excellent form in front of goal for his country of late. His odds should be quite good as well as everybody else will be expecting Ronaldo or Lewandowski to break the duck.
The general theme of these betting tips, if you haven't picked up on it by now, is that I'm anticipating a low scoring game. Therefore this tip should not shock you. If you're very brave, you could go for under 0.5 goals! But I think under 1.5 goals is a good shout for this game. Neither team have been consistently involved in high scoring game this tournament. So they would have to play a game that's really out of character here to change that trend.