Italy vs North Macedonia: Azzurri will Push for Early Lead

Will Chace
By , Updated on: Nov 14, 2023 12:00 AM
italy vs north macedonia

An inter-Mediterranean clash between Italy and North Macedonia is set to take place this Friday. The Azzurri will welcome the Macedonians to Stadio Olimpico for their reverse fixture in what is essentially a must-win for the Blues. Can Italy overtake Ukraine for second place in Group C and overcome their international woes? Continue reading to access an expert Italy vs North Macedonia prediction and explore the latest news on the Italian men’s national team.

  • Italy vs North Macedonia, European Championship Qualifying
  • November 17, 2023
  • 2:45 PM EST
  • Stadio Olimpico, Rome, Italy
  • FuboTV

Italy vs North Macedonia Betting Odds

Sportsbooks are in a bit of disagreement on this European showdown. A draw is priced in a wide range, from (+575) to (+680). Italy will play the role of Goliath as a massive (-575) favorite. Those sympathetic with the North Macedonian cause can back the Lynxes at up to (+1550) at highly-rated online sportsbook BetOnline.

La LigaBetOnlineBetUSBovadaXbetBetNow
Athletic Club-177-170-170-169-169
Celta de Vigo+520+460+460+460+460
Draw+325+320+320+310+310

To better understand the 3-way moneyline (1X2) market, see our soccer betting tips and learn about the Euro Cup 2024 betting odds.

Recent Failures of Italian Men’s National Team

Italy is one of the most successful national teams in the history of soccer, especially in the World Cup. The Blues have hoisted the World Cup trophy four times, and have won the European Championships twice. In fact, they are the reigning champions of Europe after winning in 2020. However, this win has highlighted their wild inconsistency in recent years.

Despite such a passionate soccer fan base and culture, Italy has not been present at the global stage since 2014. This is because the team failed to qualify in 2018 and 2022 despite winning the Euros in between. They were even unbeaten from October 2018 to October 2021, a 3-year stretch spanning 37 matches. This streak remains the world record for most consecutive without defeat by a national team.

Due to recent injuries, Davide Calabria, Alex Meret, and Rafael Toloi will not be part of the Italian national team, and Luciano Spalletti has opted not to make any replacements for them.

Calabria was substituted at halftime during Milan's eventual 2-2 draw against Lecce on Saturday. Examinations revealed a flexor injury for the Rossoneri captain, who has not played for the Azzurri since last year. Meanwhile, Napoli goalkeeper Meret experienced a minor calf muscle injury while warming up before a 1-0 loss against Empoli.

On Friday, Andrea Cambiaso and Andera Colpani are set to make their debut call-ups, with Juventus star Federico Chiesa making a comeback after recovering from injury. Additionally, the boss has made some adjustments to the squad by including players such as Ricardo Orsolini and Scalvini in the lineup. Lazio striker and former Blues captain Ciro Immobile has been left out in the midst.

Italy To Defeat North Macedonia
BetUS
-588

North Macedonia Breakdown

North Macedonia last played internationally in a friendly against Armenia, in which they won 3-1. Their last UEFA Euro Qualifier was a 2-0 loss to Ukraine, who now sits 2nd in the group. Failing to score against Ukraine does not bode well for them, as they now face Spalletti’s troops who excel defensively. However, watch out for Egzjan Alioski, the former Leeds United full-back. The Macedonian has scored 12 goals in 67 caps for his national team.

North Macedonia will not be without motivation either, as a win over Italy would put them level with their Mediterranean foes for 3rd in the group. But their hopes are dimming and such an outcome, in Rome, would mark a historic upset.

North Macedonia has given up only 1.29 expected goals per game, but their actual results tell a different story. A remarkable 2.33 goals per game have actually been given up, making the Macedonians a very unfortunate side in this Euro campaign. Perhaps luck will come their way on Friday, as they will be looking to keep the scoring low and take some points in a close match.

North Macedonia To Defeat Italy
BetOnline
+1550

Italy vs North Macedonia Prediction and Free Betting Pick

Italy will come into this match feeling the pressure. Currently 3rd in the group with only a few fixtures left, 3 points is almost a necessity. The last encounter with North Macedonia ended in a somewhat surprising draw after a late equalizer. Additionally, a prior loss to the Lynxes in the World Cup Qualifiers was in part why they were absent in the 2022 edition. Therefore, I believe the Azzurri will be itching to get a long-deserved win over the Macedonians and will come out hot.

I think the price is too steep to back Italy outright in this match. However, the first half market looks more promising. Italy should come out eager to get on the board first so they can sit back and preserve a lead. This gameplan suits their defensive, possession-heavy style well. At Bovada, we can get 1H Italy (-0.5) at (-160). This is essentially betting on them to win the first half. I like this price and this look a lot, and would bet it up to (-175).

Italy -0.5 First Half
Bovada
-160

Odds are accurate at the time of writing but are subject to change.

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Meet the author

Will Chace

From Boston, Will's passion for sports is more of a hereditary characteristic than a learned hobby. He regularly attends games in the area such as those of the Boston Red Sox, Boston Bruins, Boston Celtics, New England Patriots, New England Revolution. He also enjoys th...

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