Game Odds and Preview for Czech Republic vs. Italy - World Cup Qualifiers - Group B - 07/06/2013

Czech Republic vs. Italy - Matchup and Country FlagsCzech Republic are hosts to Italy in the sixth round of the World Cup qualifiers in Group B at Generali Arena in Prague on June 7th, 2013.

Group B is a tight one. Half way through, Italy, Bulgaria, Czech Republic and Denmark are all in contention for two spots that potentially lead to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

At the moment, after five matches played, Italy are in first place with 13 points and Czech Republic are in third with 8 points. In-between them is Bulgaria with 10 points, but they have played one extra game. Denmark are in fourth place with 6 points after five matches, while at the bottom there are Armenia with 3 and Malta with 0 points.

Italy have had a strong campaign so far winning four games and drawing one. The wins came against Malta (twice), Armenia and Denmark, while the draw came vs. Bulgaria in Sofia. The next four out of five games are going to be tough for Italy as they face Czech Republic twice, visit Denmark and host Bulgaria. The upcoming game in Prague is a great opportunity for Italy to strengthen their position at the top of Group B tables.

Czech Republic got their points so far by beating Armenia and Malta and drawing with Bulgaria at home and Denmark in Copenhagen. Their only loss so far in the group came to Denmark in March of this year when they lost 0-3 in Olomouc. The upcoming game vs. Italy is a big one for Czech Republic. Can Petr Czech and company make a statement and further complicate things in Group B?

Lets take a look at the odds for the upcoming match in Prague:

Czech Republic: 13/5
Draw: 11/5
Italy: 11/10

Italy are the favourites to beat their hosts on Friday. A $100 wagered on the guests returns $110 in profit, while the same bet on Czech Republic returns $260 in profit.

The most likely outcome, according to the odds, is a 1-1 tie offered at 5/1, followed by a 0-1 victory for the guests at 11/2.

Mario Balotelli, who has scored 5 goals so far in qualifications, is the favourite to score at 6/4 followed by Stephan El Shaarawy at 13/8 (bet $100 to profit $162). Vaclav Kadlec is the favourite to score for Czech Republic at 13/5 (bet $100 to profit $260).

This should be a good game. Italy may be the favourites, but Czech Republic are a serious opponent, especially at home. Czech Republic finished first, ahead of Greece, Russia and Poland in last year's Euro Cup in Group A, only to be defeated in the quarter-finals by a 76th minute Cristiano Ronaldo goal vs. Portugal. Czech Republic have also beaten Turkey 0-2 in a friendly earlier this year.

Italy, the runners up in the Euro Cup 2012 have played 2-2 vs. Brazil in a friendly earlier this year and are looking to get into shape ahead of the 2013 Confederations Cup which starts in a week or so in Brazil.

Lets see how this one plays out!