UEFA EURO 2020 daily preview: What to look out for on Saturday
Saturday, June 26, 2021
The knockout stages commence with Wales, Denmark, Italy and Austria aiming to reach the quarter-finals.
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The UEFA EURO 2020 knockout stages start on Saturday, with Wales facing Denmark and Italy taking on Austria for places in the last eight.
We preview the action ahead of the round of 16 meetings in Amsterdam and London.
18:00: Wales vs Denmark (Amsterdam)
The role of EURO outsiders has been a blessing in disguise for these two nations but neither will be unfancied when they face off in Amsterdam.
Wales struggled to see off Northern Ireland at this stage in 2016 before raising their game against a much-vaunted Belgium side in the quarter-finals. Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey were integral as Chris Coleman's team reached the last four then and the pair showed in their key defeat of Turkey this time around that they are ready to come to the fore again.
Denmark, of course, created the ultimate EURO fairy tale in 1992. Their victims in their run to glory were contenders France, the Netherlands and, in the final, Germany, while they were defeated by Sweden and drew with England in the group stage. As then, however, they found their form in their final group outing and will be hoping history repeats itself here.
Key stat: Wales have scored only five goals in the last eight games between the sides. Denmark have not won two matches in a EURO since they won the tournament in 1992.
21:00: Italy vs Austria (London)
In contrast to the first tie of the day, Italy will begin as heavy favourites against Austria at Wembley Stadium.
The Azzurri are unbeaten in the last 13 meetings between the sides – a run dating back to 1962 – and have won all four contests at the FIFA World Cup. Add in the fact they are on a record-breaking winning streak and it would seem the deck is stacked in favour of Roberto Mancini's team.
Austria, though, have been setting landmarks of their own. They came into this tournament without a victory at the finals but now have two – and they were good value for those successes against North Macedonia and Ukraine. "We've already achieved something historic; why shouldn't we keep going?" says midfielder Florian Grillitsch.
Key stat: Italy have won their last 11 international matches without conceding a goal and are unbeaten in 30 games. Austria scored just one goal at the 2008 and 2016 finals – they have now scored four times at EURO 2020.