- Italy have kept a clean sheet in five of their last seven games.
- Bosnia-Herzegovina have failed to score in three of their last four matches.
- Italy are unbeaten in 21 games in a run stretching back to September 2018.
Italy to clinch top spot
Unbeaten Italy can cement their place at the top of Nations League A Group 1 this week if they match the Netherlands’ result against Poland, and Roberto Mancini’s formidable Azzurri look favourites to secure the result they need in Sarajevo.
Italy battled their way to a crucial victory at home to Group 1 contenders Poland on Sunday, scoring either side of the break to see off their determined visitors. The Italians – who haven’t tasted defeat since September 2018 – are enjoying a major resurgence under Mancini, and with momentum to burn, another positive result looks likely on Wednesday.
The group’s bottom side Bosnia-Herzegovina became Frank de Boer’s first scalp as Netherlands’ new boss at the weekend, after they fell to a disappointing 3-1 reverse in Amsterdam with a depleted team.
With little to play for in their closing fixture, the Zmajevi should find coping with a much more incentivised Italy tough in Sarjevo, and the evidence suggests the visitors could claim a clean sheet along with three points this week.
Italy – who have kept five clean sheets in their last seven games – face a Bosnia-Herzegovina team that failed to register in three of their last four, and though Dušan Bajević’s side hit the net when they last played the Italians in September, the player that notched their goal – Edin Dzeko – is among a number of high-profile absentee for Wednesday’s rematch.
We think the defensively robust Azzurri are worth backing to nil against their blunted hosts, while our correct score prediction tips Italy to run out comfortable 2-0 winners. Having averaged 2.25 goals per 90 minutes across their last eight away assignments, Mancini’s men have proven themselves efficient rather than prolific goal-scorers on the road, though another brace should see them plant an Italian flag at the summit of Group 1 this week.