Goals, goals and more goals – this is what every neutral football fan is praying for at Euro 2012.
Goals have the ability to make or break a tournament in terms of a spectacle and with some of the best attacking players on the planet, such as Cristiano Ronaldo, set to be unleashed in Poland and Ukraine, there is every reason to suggest that the neutrals could get their wish in Euro 2012.
Bookmaker Paddy Power have opened a market on the amount of goals scored in the group stages – over 57.5 goals (5/6) and under 57.5 (5/6). That has already generated interest within punting circles, with the over 57.5 goals making plenty of appeal.
The statistics show that in order for there to be more than 57 goals scored in the group stages, there will need to be more than 3.5 goals in each game – a tall order one would assume on first viewing but past goal trends in European Championships show that goals are likely to fly in at the group stage.
In every European Championships since 1996 the amount of goals scored has been bordering in and around the 3.5 mark per game. The 1996 Euros saw 55 goals notched, 2000 produced 65, 64 goals were scored in 2004 and 57 were bagged in 2008.
So, the over 57 goals bet would have produced the goods on two of the last four occasions and only missed out by one goal in last year’s tournament.
Germany, Netherlands and Portugal are all drawn together in the same group, which is a bit of a blow, as all three teams would relish the opportunity to stick a fair few goals past some of the lesser teams in the competition.
But you would expect holders Spain to notch at least seven goals in their three group games against Italy, Ireland and Croatia, whilst England and France have the ability to turn on the attacking style against Ukraine and Sweden in Group D.
The 5/6 on offer for over 57 goals looks a bet that could have some legs.