Netherlands vs Italy. Prediction and Preview. Probable Lineups, Team News, Stats and more

The Netherlands and Italy will clash for the set of the bronze medals in the 3rd edition of the UEFA Nations League

Netherlands will host Italy in the UEFA Nations League 3rd place final match at FC Twente Stadion. The fixture will take place on  Sunday, June 18, beginning at 18:30 IST.

What can we expect this Sunday night? Parimatch News will tell you everything you need to know ahead of the upcoming match.

Netherlands News & Current Form:

Last year’s football year began with the Africa Cup of Nations and ended with the first-ever winter FIFA World Cup. Against this backdrop, 2023 is something of a humble affair. The AFC Asian Cup, to be hosted by China in the summer, has not only been moved to Qatar due to covid restrictions in the host country but has also been postponed until next winter. So the Nations League is – without any doubt – the major tournament of the year at the national team level. 

Although four years ago, not everyone realized what the tournament was. Especially just a few months after the flamboyant 2018 World Cup. The only 100% workable argument at first was that the boring friendlies had been replaced by games with a tournament component. And the low-ranked countries were also encouraged by the chance to compete with their peers to qualify for the European Championship.

However, one draw was enough to get a taste of the Nations League and admire many things. Firstly, the games played by the top teams on a daily basis. Secondly, the interesting experiments of the coaches. Thirdly, the tournament intrigues. Finally, the attitude towards the trophy. For example, the first Final Four gave Cristiano Ronaldo a chance to enjoy his second trophy at the national team level at home.

And how cool was the decisive stage of the second tournament, where, as it turned out, it was possible to see the attacking Karim BenzemaKylian Mbappé bundle for the last time. All the more reason for the French to present two crazy storylines at once.

Still, the Oranges, whose squad will be weakened by the absence of the injured Matthijs de Ligt, are the hosts. Four years ago, they were already one step away from triumphing in the Nations League, restarting a team that was in deep crisis. 

Players of the national team of Netherlands – Nathan Ake, Virgil van Dijk, Georginio Wijnaldum and Cody Gakpo – after defeat to Croatia

So there is an unclosed gestalt for the Netherlands, and for Ronald Koeman personally, who has returned to the national team. The coach then stopped halfway through, dropping everything for his dream job at FC Barcelona. And he has something to prove after a 0 – 4 defeat to France at the start of the Euro 2024 qualifiers.

Frank De Boer, who came after Koeman, failed most of all at the continental tournament, where he and his side were already eliminated in the 1st round of the play-offs. Soon after, Louis van Gaal took charge again. 

Louis more than lived up to his expectations, managing to win 1st place in qualification and then in the Nations League group. Most importantly, under the guidance of the veteran coach, the Dutch were able to perform excellently at the World Cup. 

In Qatar, they got through the group stage confidently and ahead of schedule, drew 3 – 1 with the USA in the 1/8 group stage, and then bounced back against Argentina, losing only on penalties. Ronald has been in the job again since 2023. 

The coach’s re-debut was a failure as the French crushed their opponents 4 – 0 in Paris. And 3 – 0 against Gibraltar hardly looks like a success either, given the class of the opposition.

In the Nations League semi-final, Oranje lost to Croatia 2 – 4. The main time of the match ended in a 2 – 2 draw. For the Netherlands, winger Donyell Malen and Noa Lang were the scorers. The latter equalized the score in the 6th minute. Andrej Kramaric scored in regulation time, with Mario Pasalic getting on the scoresheet. In extra time, Bruno Petkovic scored from the field and Luka Modric through a penalty.

The team finished top of their group with Belgium, Poland and Wales. The Netherlands have picked up 16 points in 6 meetings: 5 wins and a draw. The goal difference is 14-6. In the last 10 matches, the Netherlands have won 6 games, drawn and lost 3. One of the three defeats came in a penalty shoot-out.

Italy News & Current Form: 

Already under Roberto Mancini, the Italian team has managed to show both their strengths and their weaknesses. There was undoubtedly a striking triumph when the Azzurri quite deservedly came to win the UEFA EURO, also beating England in the final at Wembley.

On the other hand, after that Jorginho and company lost 1st place in the qualifying group to Switzerland before sensationally losing the tie to North Macedonia. However, the coaching staff stayed on, and are preparing for new cycles. There are contradictions here as well. On the one hand, they won the group stage in the Nations League last year.

On the other hand, the new selection kicked off in March with a 1 – 2 at home against England (followed by a 2 – 0 but with modest Malta). In the Netherlands, on the other hand, the negative scoreline against Spain was repeated. 

Coach of the Italian national team Roberto Mancini and Mateo Retegui

The Spaniards scored a quick goal as early as the third minute of the match, with winger Yeremy Pino scoring. However, Italy quickly equalized in the 11th minute when forward Ciro Immobile converted a penalty. The winning goal came in the 88th minute when forward Joselu scored the winning goal. The match ended in a 1 – 2 defeat for Italy. Therefore, Italy will play in the UEFA Nations League tie for third place on Sunday.

Three names stood out in the line-up. First, 36-year-old Leonardo Bonucci, who has long been a long-term bench sitter at Juventus FC, came into the starting line-up. Secondly, Davide Frattesi from US Sassuolo got a place in midfield. Nicolò Zaniolo is also at the cutting edge of the attack alongside Immobile – the former AS Roma player is too much of a sensation to play for Galatasaray.

In the Nations League group stage, the Italians top the table alongside Hungary, Germany and England. The Italians have picked up 11 points in 6 meetings: 3 wins, 2 draws and a defeat. The goal difference is 8:7. In 10 official meetings, Italy have recorded 4 wins, 2 draws and 4 defeats. Italy have 5 wins, 3 draws and 2 defeats away from home.

Netherlands form guide:

Italy form guide: 

Netherlands vs Italy Head-To-Head Record: 

  • March 28, 2017: Netherlands 1 – 2 Italy (International Friendlies);
  • June 4, 2018: Italy 1 – 1 Netherlands (International Friendlies);
  • September 7, 2020: Netherlands 0 – 1 Italy  (UEFA National League);
  • October 14, 2020: Italy 1 – 1 Netherlands (UEFA National League).

Netherlands vs Italy Predicted XI:

Netherlands possible starting lineup (4-2-3-1): Bijlow; Dumfries, Geertruida, Van Dijk, Aké; Wieffer, De Jong, Koopmeiners; Malen, Gakpo, Simons.

Italy possible starting lineup (3-5-2): Donnarumma; Acerbi, Toloi, Bonucci; Di Lorenzo, Barella, Jorginho, Frattesi, Spinazzola; Zaniolo, Immobile.

Statistical preview of the match Netherlands vs Italy:

  • Netherlands’ First XI average age is 25.4 years.
  • Italy’s First XI average age is 29.8 years.
  • Position of the Netherlands’ team in the FIFA rating – 6th place, while Italy is placed 8th.
  • Market value of the team from the Netherlands is $575mln, while the price of the Italian squad is $571mln.
  • The Netherlands have scored at least three goals in 4 home games.
  • The Netherlands have 9 out of 10 games without a loss as hosts.
  • Italy have scored more than a goal in 7 of their 11 away games.

What has been said before the match:

Ronald Koeman believes his team can write history:

“We can write history. If you win something with a national team, there is something behind your name. That awareness is present within the squad. You can feel it, the players are talking about it, talking about winning.”

“You saw how happy Portugal were in 2019 when we played against them. It was always about a European Championship or World Cup but now the Nations League has been added.”

“Everyone talks about 1988, when the tournament was only made up of eight teams. That says it all. There’s something behind your name. That awareness is there. We are therefore driven to win this prize.”

“In principle, he has to train all summer to start the new season. I still think a fit Memphis is a great player but it gives us the opportunity to put other players in that position.”

“It was a very bad week in which everything went wrong. Injuries, illnesses, results. We are now playing a semi-final, so we can put things right in one fell swoop.”

“You have to stay cool, that’s not always easy. You can train all you want, but you can’t train at the moment. But we do recognise that it’s important once it gets to that point. You can have a fixed angle, wait for a keeper, but the more you doubt the worse it is. It depends on the player, he has to concentrate and practice. But practicing the moment when it’s the fifth on Wednesday evening and you have to use the penalty, that’s not possible.”

Roberto Mancini ahead of the game with the Netherlands and about his approach to the games:

“We have reached the Nations League finals for the second time and it’s a good achievement, especially because we played the group stage with several youngsters. Winning the trophy would be very important, obviously, and we will certainly give our best.”

“Ciro Immobile had several injuries after the last Euros. Now he is fit and I’m happy to have him here. I have seen Nicolo Zaniolo doing very well in training, he has a chance to play.”

“We have already begun to freshen things up and will continue to do so. There are good kids. But talent comes in waves. Right now we have good midfielders and defenders, but we are lacking great forwards, I don’t know why.”

“We set things up differently, and we did things well in the first half when we managed to cut Spain’s passing lines. But we dropped off a bit too much in the second half.”

“Every team that gets to the final four is a strong team. It’s hard to find a weaker one. Spain haven’t changed and it’ll be a tough test, as always. Croatia have been doing great over the last eight years if I’m not mistaken. And there’s the Netherlands. I’m sure it’ll be an outstanding final four.”

Netherlands vs Italy Prediction:

Sunday evening will throw up a match between two vibrant European teams with something to say. Both teams lost in the semi-finals of the tournament, but have a chance of clinching the bronze medals. 

The Netherlands, who nearly stopped Argentina in the quarter-finals of WC 2024 (2-2 in regulation time; 3-4 on penalties) have not lost in regulation time in 11 games of the Nations League. The lads of ex-Barcelona Ronald Koeman hope to finish the campaign of the Nations League third edition on a major note, beating the Italians using the loud support of the home stands. 

Would the guys from the Apennine Peninsula accept such a fate? Not so. Their head-to-head record of 10 wins out of 23 matches should give them some credence. The Flying Dutchmen have won only three times and they are winless in seven head-to-head recent encounters. Yet the story of bygone days is the only thing that the pale and troubled Italy can cling to in the search for a positive momentum right now.

What pattern of play will we see? Although both teams play with near-optimal line-ups, this does not prevent them from displaying a rather dismal defensive performance. And it’s often the ones who are expected to perform perfectly that make mistakes – Bonucci and van Dijk both bottled the semi-finals. Neither do their lesser-known partners. 

At the same time, both teams are relatively bright offensively, with Spain lucky to concede just once and the Croats twice. In a match of no particular significance (let’s not exaggerate the significance of bronze in a third-ranked tournament), the opponents are likely to display striking football again to break the 2.5 total. To back up this claim, the Netherlands’ national team have conceded in four of their last five matches. In 3 of their 5 games, the Orange have conceded more than a goal. They also scored in 20 of their 21 encounters. Italy, meanwhile, have scored in 9 out of 10 Nations League games.

Parimatch News staff prediction:

We say: The Netherlands will not lose; both teams will score and the match total will be over 2.5 – Yes.