UEFA European Championship qualifiers don’t come much bigger than this: an historic international footballing rivalry is once again reignited as Italy face England.
With Gareth Southgate’s side travelling to a hostile Naples still looking for revenge for their Euro 2020 final disappointment at the hands of the Azzurri, expect plenty of action as international football in Europe finally returns for the first time since the 2022 World Cup.
That said, England have already confirmed a handful of first-team players will be missing, with Marcus Rashford among those to withdraw from the squad in a blow for Southgate.
With Italy holding an edge over England in recent clashes between the two teams, we take a look at where best to find value in Thursday’s match-up.
Italy vs England odds
Perhaps surprisingly given that they’re playing away from home here, England have been made slight favourites for this match amongst the bookmakers.
Granted, Southgate’s side performed well during the 2022 World Cup — for which Italy failed to qualify — and were unlucky to lose to France in the quarterfinals, but the Azzurri are made of stern stuff and hold an edge over England in their past few meetings.
to score Y / N
|Over / Under
|+165||+200||+140||-110 / -130||+115 / -160||+190||+140|
|+170||+210||+140||-105 / -125||+116 / -161||+196||+144|
|19/10||11/5||6/4||10/11, 4/5||6/5, 8/13||—||—|
|2.88||2.90||2.35||1.91 / 1.80||2.30 / 1.57||—||—|
|2.90||3.30||2.60||1.95 / 1.86||1.97 / 1.85||1.75||2.09|
Italy vs England: 3 things to know
Italy vs England match facts
- Date: Thursday, March 23
- Kickoff Time: 3:45 p.m. ET / 7:45 p.m. GMT / 6:45 a.m. AEDT (Fri, Mar. 24)
- Location: Stadio Diego Armando Maradona (Naples, Italy)
- Official: Srdjan Jovanovic (Serbia)
- Last meeting: Italy 1-0 England (UEFA Nations League — September 23, 2022)
Italy vs England team news
Italy head coach Roberto Mancini looks set to have a near-full-strength squad to pick from for this upcoming match. Doubts still remain over Federico Dimarco and Federico Chiesa, however, as both limped off late on in the Inter Milan vs Juventus match at the weekend.
England have been hit with an injury blow as the in-form Marcus Rashford won’t be available for selection here. The Manchester United forward suffered a knock in his side’s FA Cup match against Fulham at the weekend and pulled out of the squad as a result. Mason Mount and Nick Pope also miss out through injury.
Italy vs England key stats
- In this match, Harry Kane will be looking to become England’s top scorer of all time. The Spurs forward is tied on 53 goals with Wayne Rooney.
- England haven’t beaten Italy in a competitive match since 1977. The past four meetings between the two have ended in four draws and two Azzurri wins.
- England failed to score in either of their two matches against Italy throughout the 2022 Nations League tournament.
Italy vs England prediction
- Moneyline lean: England (+140)
- Against the spread lean: England -0.5 (+140)
- Score prediction: Italy 1-1 England
Although both of these sides will be desperate to win this opening Euro 2024 qualifier, they will be equally eager to avoid early defeat in their respective campaigns.
Due to that, it’s likely that will see a close, tight affair between the two, which could limit goalscoring opportunities.
Granted, with the players on show here, it may only take one good chance for the goalscoring to commence but we still can’t see either side running away with this match and therefore, we’re predicting a 1-1 finish. You can back that scoreline at +525 with BetMGM.
Italy vs England: best bet
- Pick: 30+ Italy booking points
- Odds: 11/8 (SkyBet)
You could play this bet slightly safer and back Italy to have 20+ booking points instead (two yellow cards or more/one red), but we fancy a feisty affair in Naples.
Italy recorded 13 yellow cards across their six Nations League outings — their last competitive fixtures — with five of those coming in matches vs England.
Mancini’s side also received five bookings in their Euro 2020 final clash against these opponents, so 30+ booking points in this latest clash doesn’t seem exactly unlikely.
Italy vs England: flier bet
- Pick: Bukayo Saka to score first
- Odds: 17/2 (SkyBet)
Given his fantastic form in front of goal throughout this campaign, this 17/2 pick for Bukayo Saka to score first seems very good value for money.
Although England and Italy have threats from other areas — Harry Kane, Ivan Toney, etc. — who could spoil this party, Saka is in the form of his career and comes into this latest international break on the back of a two-goal display for Arsenal vs Crystal Palace at the weekend.
It’s also key to remember that the 21-year-old netted three goals across four World Cup matches for England in December and he seems just about the first name on Southgate’s team sheet at the moment.