Euro 2024

Euro 2024 Day Six Stat Pack: Lay Croatia, back Germany fouls and 9/2 scorer tip

Sky Sports' Lewis Jones - aka Jones Knows - unleashes his data and stats led analysis to dig out three betting angles on day six of Euro 2024...

Croatia v Albania (14:00) - Croats are a fading force

Concluding that Croatia are no longer the force they once were is a dangerous game to play. But I'm playing it here. This now looks a team full of ageing limbs and a distinct lack of quality in the final third of the pitch. They looked like a team going that way in qualifying but I wanted to see whether the stench of a major tournament perked them up into their usual tough to beat selves. It certainly didn't.

They were limp against Spain across the pitch and carried little attacking threat.

In competitive matches now stretching back to their remarkable run at the World Cup, they have scored more than once in just six of their last 18 matches.

And in qualifying, 24 teams scored more than the 13 they managed in eight games. A team with those sorts of issues in front of goal should not be 1.538/15 on the Betfair Exchange to win a match at a major tournament.

Yes, Albania are, according to the metrics, the worst team at this tournament but they played with good spirit and organisation for large parts against Italy. It's a defence that did shine in qualifying, conceding just four goals en route to topping their qualification group. I'm happy to back them here to get a result by laying Croatia at short odds in the outright market.

Germany v Hungary (17:00) - Back 10/11 foul angle

Between 2016-2021 in the Bundesliga, Julian Nagelsmann's teams averaged 13.54 fouls per 90 minutes across a sample size of 170 games. A ranking that always averaged them in the top five of all Bundesliga clubs for that particular metric and Hoffenheim topped the charts for the most fouls made in the 2018/19 season.

His German side have mirrored that approach of being fully on-board to make fouls to disrupt an opposition with a haul of 13.2 fouls made per 90 in his nine games in charge with 15 being made in the 5-1 win over Scotland. That's a surprisingly high figure for a team that played with at least a two-goal lead for most of the game and had an extra player for 45 minutes.

It shows this Germany team are going to be a high-octane, aggressive, counter-pressing team at this tournament and keeping their fouls committed numbers on your side could prove a very wise move. The line has been set at 11 or more German fouls at 10/111.91 which based on the numbers looks a very solid investment.

Scotland v Switzerland (20:00) - Ndoye backed to fire at 9/2

Excuse the hyperbole, but Granit Xhaka blew me away with his performance in Switzerland's 3-1 opening win over Hungary. The transformation to his game in becoming such a classy, tenacious and intelligent player with the ball is a testament to his professionalism.

The ex-Arsenal man simply bossed it. He had the most touches, the most passes completed and the most passes in the final third of any player in Cologne and created four chances for his teammates. If Scotland play with the same timidness here then Xhaka is likely to lead the Swiss to a pretty convincing victory with the 23/20 on them defying a +1 handicap a likely runner.

Dan Ndoye was equally as impressive as Xhaka in that 3-1 win, where a switch in position from left-wing back to playing as an inverted winger off the right - where he plays for his club Bologna - looked a clever move by the Swiss management. He had three shots, nine touches in the opposition box and caused huge problems with his pace and power when cutting into central areas.

Against such a ropey defensive outfit like Scotland, who have conceded 26 goals in their last 10 games, Ndoye isn't being given the respect playing his advanced position deserves and looks a fine price at 9/25.50 to score.

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