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ITALY v COSTA RICA BETTING PREVIEWItaly executed an astute gameplan with their superior experience and efficiency to claim a 2-1 win over England, three points which should really break the back of what will be needed to make the last 16. Italy’s midfield, with the passing ability of both Andrea Pirlo and Marco Verratti, should be able to control possession better than Uruguay did against the Costa Ricans.
Goalkeeper Buffon has now returned to training and should be involved in the starting lineup despite the impressive showing of replacement Salvatore Sirigu against England. Barzagli is a major doubt and Paletta was the weakest link in the Italian defense so the centrail pair could be formed by Bonucci and Chiellini. Otherwise, Chiellini will be deployed once again on the left back.
Los Ticos recorded a surprising 3-1 win against Uruguay. It was also the first time they had ever beaten "la Celeste", at their ninth attempt. They demonstrated surprisingly good defense and very good attacking play, where Joel Campbell was the team star scoring the first and setting up the third with a sumptuous through ball. He is the pick to do some damage against Italy on Friday.
They are likely to remain unchanged, again lining up in a 4-5-1 formation. Despite Bryan Ruiz was mostly anonymous against Uruguay, he will retain his spot.
With just one clean sheet to their name in the last 10 matches, the Italians have looked less than convincing at the back recently. They conceded a goal to a modest Luxembourg team in their final warm-up match on home soil. The Over 2,5 goals bet have paid out in Italy's last four competitive matches, as well as Costa Rica's previous five at this competition.
These squads have only met one time in a 1994 friendly, which Italy won 1-0. Costa Rica, meanwhile, have never won consecutive matches at the World Cup.
ITALY v COSTA RICA PROBABLE LINEUPSItaly (4-1-4-1): Buffon; Darmian, Chiellini, Bonucci, Barzagli; De Rossi; Pirlo, Candreva, Marchisio, Verratti; Balotelli
Costa Rica (5-4-1): Navas; Duarte, Gamboa, Diaz, Umana, Gonzalez; Tejeda, Ruiz, Borges, Bolanos; Campbell
ITALY v COSTA RICA BEST ODDS
|ITALY|| 1.54 with||Bet £10, win £15.40|
|THE DRAW|| 4.20 with||Bet £10, win £42.00|
|COSTA RICA|| 7.60 with||Bet £10, win £76.00|
ITALY v COSTA RICA PREDICTIONS
- Italy to win by one @ 3.75
- Over 2,5 goals @ 2.09
- 2:1 Correct Score @ 10.00
- Pirlo anytime goalscorer @ 6.30
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