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Slovakia shock Belgium at EURO 2024 as France suffer Mbappe scare

EURO 2024 betting tips and predictions

Belgium’s EURO 2024 campaign got off to the worst possible start on Tuesday (AEST), losing 1-0 to Slovakia in Frankfurt, Germany.

Domenico Tedesco’s men were heavily favoured to win their opening game in Group E, but any notions of an easy night out were nixed when Ivan Schranz put the underdogs ahead in the seventh minute.

The Belgians had plenty of chances to equalise, with star striker Romelu Lukaku guilty of missing several opportunities.

That included two occasions where the VAR intervened to deny the world’s No.3 team.

For Slovakia, sitting 45th in FIFA rankings, it was a dream start that defied even their own expectations, as coach Francesco Calzona admitted he would have been “delighted” with a draw.

Following Romania’s 3-0 win over Ukraine on Monday, the two established teams in Group F have plenty of work to do in order to reach the knockout phase.

Online bookmakers have Slovakia as +270 outsiders for their clash with Ukraine (+110) on Friday night, while Belgium are -250 favourites to beat Romania (+600) on Sunday morning.

Meanwhile, in Group D, France survived a tricky test against Austria to kick off their EURO 2024 campaign with a 1-0 win.

They needed a bit of luck, however, going ahead late in the first half through an own goal from Maximilian Woeber.

The win may also have come at a cost, as star striker Kylian Mbappe was forced from the field late with a bloodied face after a collision.

The Real Madrid recruit was later taken to hospital in Dusseldorf, although French football officials have sought to calm fears that Mbappe will require surgery on a broken nose.

It doesn’t get any easier next up for Les Bleus, although the top soccer betting sites have them as +110 favourites for their clash with the Netherlands (+240) on Saturday morning.

France remain one of the market fancies for the EURO 2024 title, paying +400 outright odds at BetOnline.

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