Euro 2016 action continues on Friday as Italy and Spain take to the field for their respective second round Group Stage matches.
Italy overcame a talented Belgium side in their opening game and will be favourites against the Swedes. Sweden, on the other hand, will be hoping for better after Zlatan Ibrahimovic rescued a draw for the side in their opening game against Ireland.
The sides have met on three prior occasions in the European Championships, with Italy emerging the victors in their most recent matchup, a 2-1 win back in Euro 2000.
While Sweden will be spearheaded by Ibrahimovic once more, the Italian outfit don’t boast the big name players they have had in the past. Nevertheless, the side remain a tough proposition. The Azzurri are also expected to be at full strength for the tie, while Sweden are missing Carl Lustig with a groin problem.
The match takes place at the Stadium de Toulouse, Toulouse.
Action gets underway from 15:00.
The second match of the day will see Croatia take on Czech Republic.
The clash of the sides will constitute the first ever competitive fixture between the two, with Croatia knowing a victory will guarantee them progress to the knockout phase of the tournament.
Croatia got off to a positive start when they beat Turkey 1-0 in their opening match and will be hoping to continue in the same vein against the Czechs, who have it all to do following a narrow 1-0 loss to Spain their opening fixture.
Neither outfit has any suspensions or injuries, so both teams should be at full strength for the tie. Croatia will be favourites given the side’s illustrious personal, which includes their goal scorer from their opening game, Real Madrid’s Luka Modric.
The match will be played at the Stade Geoffroy Guichard, Saint-Etienne.
The game gets underway at 18:00.
The final game of the day’s action will see defending champions Spain take on Turkey.
Spain have a dominant record against Turkey, having beaten the side four times in seven attempts, while also boasting a 52-year unbeaten record against the Turks. Both sides are at full strength for the game.
La Roja began their defence of the European crown with a 1-0 victory over the Czech Republic in their opening game, but question marks continue to circle over the side’s firepower, as defender Gerard Pique was needed to snatch the victory in the dying minutes.
Turkey, meanwhile, face an uphill battle to make it out of the group, having already been beaten by Croatia in their opening game. The side will be hoping to take inspiration from the country’s only ever victory against the Spaniards, which came back in 1954 World Cup qualifying.
The match will take place at the setting of the Stade de Nice, Nice.
Kick-off is from 21:00.