Italy vs Albania Preview: Reigning Champions Kick Off Their Campaign Against The Red and Blacks

Dumitru Palanchuk
Dumitru Palanchuk
8 June 2024, 19:01

This group stage match between Italy and Albania is set to take place at Borussia Dortmund’s Signal Iduna Park in Dortmund. Italy, with their rich history in European football, will be looking to start their campaign on a strong note, while Albania, participating in only their second European Championship, aims to challenge expectations and secure a landmark victory. According to the Italy vs Albania odds, Italy enters the match as the favourites, given their status as the defending champions and their historical dominance over Albania, having won all four previous encounters. However, Albania's impressive qualifying campaign, where they topped their group ahead of Czech Republic and Poland, suggests they should not be underestimated. Before getting to the Italy vs Albania prediction, it is important to consider the latest team news and developments.

Italy Team News

Italy's tactical approach under Luciano Spalletti focus on maintaining possession and creating scoring opportunities through precise passing and movement, the similar football that brought him a remarkable Serie A title with Napoli. Despite their strong squad, Italy's recent form has been inconsistent. They finished second in their qualifying group behind England and struggled in some matches, raising questions about their ability to perform under pressure and turn around matches. The absence of defensive symbols and stalwarts like Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci, who have finished their careers, means the team will rely on newer faces to step up. In this regard, Spalletti's tactical resilience and the team's determination will be tested as they aim to defend their European crown. 

Albania Team News

Albania's qualification for Euro 2024 was historic, as they topped their group for the first time, finishing ahead of Czech Republic and Poland. Their defence was particularly impressive, conceding only four goals in eight matches. While Albania lacks the same household names as Italy, their team-oriented approach and resilience make them a potential threat. The match against Gli Azzurri will be a significant test of their capabilities and could set the tone for their campaign in this challenging group.

The Red and Blacks, managed by former Arsenal and Brazil defender Sylvinho, has assembled quite an interesting squad which could have been easily at the first place if not get into the group of death. WIth Lazio defender Elseid Hysaj, Atalanta's Berat Djimsiti, and forward Armando Broja, who has experience in the English Premier League with Chelsea and Fulham, the team makes a solid statement, that it has formidable players in all positions. At the same time, the emphasis of Albanian football lies in the strong defence, focusing on defensive organisation and counter-attacks. 

Italy vs Albania Prediction

Albania Handicap +1.5

While the difference in class between the two is obvious, Italy cannot brag about the cohesive display, as Luciano Spalletti still struggles to build connections between the lines and manage the change of generations. Albania in this regard is looking more versatile, with no aspirations or overly high expectations. Albania’s status as outsider will perfectly suit the team, who will be eager to exploit the counter attacking possibilities against the Gli Azzurri and it is hard to expect an easy road for Italy. This Italy vs Albania tip can be picked up at 1.71 at MrPlay.

Total Goals Under 2.5

The Red and Blacks, given their relative lack of household names in the attack, prioritise defence and are not overly productive when it comes to the goals scored. Thus, during the qualification stage, only 2 matches have seen more than 2 goals scored. Italy, on the other hand, still suffers from Barcelonaesque passing in the midfield that does not give progress to the opponents’ net, a problem that was evident since Roberto Mancini’s tenure. This outcome can be taken at MrPlay for 1.84.

Total Goals 1-30 Minutes Over 0.5

Both of the teams are prone to goals in the first 30 minutes of their respective matches. In the case of Italy, at least one goal was scored during this interval in 4 out the team’s last 5 official matches (given that the match against Ukraine was goalless at all). Albania, on the other hand, has 3 out of their last 5 matches, where the goal was scored in the first half an hour. This trend can be picked up at MrPlay for 1.88.

Remember to gamble responsibly. Tips provided serve only as a recommendation, not as a call to action. Always rely on your own judgement.