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Euro 2024 Qualifying Israel vs. Iceland Prediction & Betting Tips

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      • (31') E. Zahavi (PG)
      • (39') A. Guðmundsson
      • (42') A. Traustason
      • (83') A. Guðmundsson
      • (87') A. Guðmundsson
      • (73') E. Zahavi
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        • (73') R. Revivo
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          Euro 2024 Qualifying Israel vs. Iceland

          The upcoming Euro 2024 playoff semi-final between Israel and Iceland is set to be a fascinating encounter, not just for the high stakes involved but also for the unique narratives that both teams bring to the match. This Thursday, on neutral ground in Budapest, the teams will vie for a chance to edge closer to qualification for a tournament that has historically eluded both nations. Here’s a deeper look into both teams' journeys, key players, and what this match signifies for each side.

          Israel's performance in the Euro 2024 qualifiers showcased a team on the cusp of achieving automatic qualification. Finishing 3rd in a group with Romania, Switzerland, Belarus, Kosovo, and Andorra, and only two points shy of Switzerland, Israel demonstrated their capabilities and potential. This performance, while commendable, would likely be tinged with a hint of disappointment for missing out on automatic qualification so narrowly, particularly when they dropped points against some poor sides in the process.

          Central to Israel's hopes is Oscar Gloukh, the 19-year-old attacking midfielder from RB Salzburg, whose talent and potential are a beacon for the team's aspirations. Gloukh's contribution to the team's dynamics cannot be overstated, providing creative spark and a goal threat from midfield. Under the stewardship of Alon Hazan, Israel have shown resilience and adaptability.

          The geopolitical landscape has also played a part in Israel's journey, with the team relinquishing the home advantage they were set to enjoy for this tie due to political issues. This relocation of the match to Budapest adds another layer of complexity and challenge for the team but also speaks to the team's resilience and ability to adapt to circumstances beyond their control.

          Israel's participation in major international tournaments has been limited, with their only appearance being at the 1970 World Cup. This playoff presents a golden opportunity for the team to make history by qualifying for their first European Championship.

          Iceland's journey to the Euro 2024 playoffs paints a picture of a team in transition. Finishing 4th in a qualifying group that also featured Portugal, Slovakia, Luxembourg, Bosnia-Herzegovina, and Liechtenstein, Iceland's campaign was underwhelming, reflecting a decline from the heights of Euro 2016. That tournament, where Iceland reached the quarter-finals, remains a high watermark in Icelandic football, marking their debut in major international competitions and capturing the imagination of football fans worldwide.

          The intervening years have seen a steady decline in Iceland's football fortunes, culminating in a lacklustre qualifying campaign for Euro 2024. This decline is somewhat puzzling given that, on paper, it could be argued that Iceland are still as good as they were in 2016, so performances being markedly worse is somewhat of a puzzle.

          Genoa's Albert Guðmundsson stands out as the notable player in the current squad, carrying the weight of expectation for his attacking contributions on the field. Additionally, Lille winger Hákon Arnar Haraldsson and Ajax youngster Kristian Hlynsson are a pair of very promising prospects. Under the guidance of Åge Hareide, Iceland seek to rediscover the spirit and cohesiveness that propelled them to success in previous years.

          Iceland's head-to-head record against Israel, with three draws and two losses in five attempts, including two draws in their most recent meetings in 2022, suggests a closely matched contest. This historical context adds another dimension to the upcoming match, with Iceland looking to secure their first victory against Israel when it matters most.

          Israel To Win

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          Israel To Win @ 6/5
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          Both Teams To Score

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          Israel To Score 2+ Goals

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          Israel To Score 2+ Goals @ 5/4
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          Team News

          Israel Team News:

          36-year-old and all-time top goalscorer Eran Zahavi will lead the line for Israel with youngster Oscar Gloukh playing in the pocket behind him.

          20-year-old Dor Turgeman will also start on the left flank, with vie captain Dor Peretz anchoring the midfield. Captain Eli Dasa will start at right-back.

          Iceland Team News:

          Iceland will start with Albert Guðmundsson in the forward line while Burnley's Jóhann Berg Guðmundsson will hope to start on the right wing.

          Blackburn's Arnór Sigurðsson will hope for a starting berth somewhere in the midfield while Sverrir Ingi Ingason will hold down the fort at the heart of the defence.

          Form Guide (Last Five Games)

          Israel are coming into this game amidst a mixed run of form having won two, drawn one and lost two of their last five games. Most recently, Israel registered a comfortable 2-0 win away at Andorra, an expected result that came via an Andorra own goal and a goal in the 81st minute from Gadi Kinda.

          Prior to that, Israel were beaten 1-2 in Hungary by Romania, with Eran Zahavi's opener after just two minutes eventually overturned by goals from George Pușcaș and Ianis Hagi.

          The defeat to Romania was the last of a three-match winless streak that was preceded by a 1-1 draw with Switzerland and a 1-0 defeat away in Kosovo, both of which followed a 1-0 win over Belarus.

          Iceland's form is equally mixed. The Nordic side registered friendly wins over Guatemala and Honduras in January, outside of the standard international window, but that game involved largely domestic players and doesn't reflect on this squad.

          In their last five games during regular international windows, Iceland have won two, drawn one and lost two. Most recently, Iceland fell to a 2-0 defeat away in Portugal, a result that followed a 4-2 loss away in Slovakia prior to that.

          Iceland entered that two-match losing streak on a run of three without defeat, having comfortably beaten Liechtenstein 4-0, thanks to a Gylfi Sigurðsson brace in addition to goals from Alfreð Finnbogason and Hákon Haraldsson, after drawing 1-1 with Luxembourg and beating Bosnia-Herzegovina 1-0.

          Footy Accumulators Prediction

          This one should be a very competitive encounter with both sides flawed outfits whose form has been up and down. Iceland had a tougher qualifying campaign in terms of competition but performed poorly and were unconvincing against the three sides with quality in their ranks, so we fancy Israel to just about edge this one. We predict: Israel 2-1 Iceland.

          Don’t forget to check out the rest of our previews, tips and offers for this weekend’s action. Footy Accumulators is the #1 football betting site for the latest on betting in the UK - download the Betting Hub app for more!

          Header logoEuro 2024 Qualifying - Group I

          Team logoRomania
          Team logoSwitzerland
          Team logoIsrael
          Team logoBelarus
          Team logoKosovo
          Team logoAndorra
          Last updated 13/04/2024

          Header logoEuro 2024 Qualifying - Group J

          Team logoPortugal
          Team logoSlovakia
          Team logoLuxembourg
          Team logoIceland
          Team logoBosnia
          Team logoLiechtenstein
          Last updated 13/04/2024

          Where To Watch

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