The second UEFA Nations League semifinal will pit the Netherlands against England. The Three Lions are slight favorites coming into this match due to the strong showing of English football over the last calendar year. England made it to the World Cup Semifinals, and English teams won both the Champions League and Europa League in the last week. However, players on the Dutch team have had more rest, and they will try to use that to their advantage.
Don’t miss the UEFA Nations League semifinal from the Estadio D. Afonso Henriques in Guimaraes, Portugal at 2:45 p.m. ET on Thursday, June 6, 2019. Catch every moment of the match live on ESPN2 and Univision.
UEFA Nations League Semifinals Betting Odds at BookMaker.eu
Netherlands appearance in the UEFA Nations League Semifinals is quite surprising considering the two teams they were pitted against in Group 1. The Dutch seemingly got the short end of the stick when they were drawn into a group with France and Germany, arguably the two best teams on the continent. They stunned both teams at home though, blanking Germany 3-0 in October and beating France 2-0 in November. Still, the Dutch needed some help to finish first and looked set to come in second after Germany took a 2-0 lead late into the final game of the Group Stage. Quincy Promes and Virgil van Dijk netted in the final five minutes to salvage a draw for The Flying Dutchmen.
They would have rather advanced to the World Cup Final, but England earned a small measure of revenge over Croatia by beating them in order to win the group and send Croatia down to League B. England needed to win their last two games to win Group D, and they jumped on Spain early in Sevilla to get the first victory in October. That last win was hard-fought though as Croatia took a 1-0 lead midway through the second half at Wembley, and the Three Lions had to rally. Jesse Lingard and Harry Kane scored in the final 15 minutes to send England through.
Matchup to Watch
It will be very interesting to see the starting eleven that manager Gareth Southgate chooses to play on Thursday. Danny Rose, Eric Dier, Jordan Henderson, Harry Kane, Dele Alli, and Trent Alexander-Arnold all started in the Champions League Final on Saturday, and Joe Gomez came off the bench as a reserve. Those players may not be at 100 percent, and in particular Kane and Alli had been nursing injuries before the final.
With this in mind, I expect the Netherlands to be much more daring on the attack. Stars Virgil van Dijk and Georginio Wijnaldum also took part in the Champions League Final, but the Dutch have four players from the young, talented Ajax contingent that nearly made it to Madrid. Frenkie de Jong and Donny van de Beek have been brilliant creators and Memphis Depay can finish if given the chance.
Prop Bet – Netherlands Over 1.5 Goals +168
I don’t have an abundance of faith in England’s back line. I think Harry Maguire is a very good center back, but Ajax made a habit of picking apart better back lines throughout their Champions League run. The Dutch have a much better chance of scoring at least two goals here than the odds indicate.
Free Soccer Betting Pick
The Dutch are good value at this price. The Netherlands have fresher legs, and their young stars can use that to their advantage. They are back to playing the wide-open Dutch soccer that made them a treat to watch in the 1980s, and I’ll back them here.
UEFA Nations League Prediction: Netherlands 2, England 1
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