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Czech vs. Portugal Preview

The quarter finals for this summer’s European Championships get underway on in Warsaw on Thursday evening as Group A winners Czech Republic meet Portugal, who finished second in Group B.

After their 4-1 thumping by Group favourites Russia, few would have fancied Michal Bilek’s team to progress to the tournaments last eight, but narrow victories against Greece and Poland saw the Czech’s finish in pole position. They do go into this game as outsiders, with most bookmakers offering 5.5 (9/2). Portugal are 1.80 (4/5) with Paddy Power whilst the draw is best priced at 3.60 (13.5).

The Portuguese also lost their tournament opener to eventual Group B winners Germany. They also squandered a two goal lead in their second game against Denmark before securing all three points thanks to a late winner from Silvestre Virela. However, it was their own resolve in their final game that saw them come from one goal down to beat 2010 World Cup finalists the Netherlands on Sunday.

Captain Cristiano Ronaldo scored both goals in their last game, and the Real Madrid man is now second favourite to finish the tournament as top scorer, at a best price of 5.0 (4/1). Ronaldo also scored when these two sides met in the group stage of Euro 2008; Portugal running out 3-1 winners on the way to finishing in first place, before eventually being eliminated in the quarter finals.

However, it was Czech Republic who won their clash in the quarter finals of Euro 96. They went on to reach the final, losing to Germany on the now defunct Golden Goal rule. With an open game expected, there could well be goals here, so you might want to take advantage of the 8.5 (15/2) offered by some bookmakers that there will be five or more scored in the game.

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