Italy U20 vs Ecuador U20 - South American’s to gain revenge in Gdynia

Ecuador can get some payback after group stage defeat
ecuador u20
Ecuador came to the 2019 FIFA U20 World Cup after winning the South American U20 Championship (Getty Images)

Italy U20 vs Ecuador U20 Preview, Predictions & Betting Tips


Ecuador and Italy meet at Stadion Miejski in Gdynia to decide who will be awarded third place at the 2019 FIFA U20 World Cup

Despite both managers being likely to make sweeping changes to their starting sides, there is value in an Ecuador victory at 3.00. The South American U20 champions dominated Italy in the group stage despite losing the game 1-0 after they were reduced to 10 men.


Italy U20 Form & Team News


Italy’s FIFA U20 World Cup campaign began with a 2-1 win against Mexico after goals to Davide Frattesi and Luca Ranieri. Paolo Nicolato’s side then beat Ecuador 1-0 with captain Andrea Pinamonti scoring the winner before a 0-0 draw against Japan in Bydgoszcz where Nicolato made nine changes.

Nicolato reverted to his first choice starting XI against Poland in Gdynia in the round of 16 with Andrea Pinamonti’s 38th minute penalty securing a 1-0 victory. Italy were the beneficiaries of another early red card to their opponents in the quarter-finals as Gli Azzurrini defeated Mali 4-2 in Tychy. 

Already 1-0 up thanks to an own goal, two goals to Andrea Pinamonti and Davide Frattesi's looping header put Italy into the semi-finals where they would take on Ukraine in Gdynia. Andrea Pinamonti spurned a great chance to put Italy into the lead and Gianluca Scamacca's stoppage time equaliser was ruled out after a foul in the build up.

Manager Paolo Nicolato has to pick his side up after a gut wrenching defeat. We could see wholesale changes here with players such as Leonardo Loria, Antonio Candela, Alessandro Buongiorno, Davide Bettella, Andrea Colpani, Gabriele Gori, Marco Olivieri, Domenico Alberico and Christian Capone all getting a run out.

Italy are slight favourites with bookmakers at 2.40, those odds will tempt many who think Italy can sign off their U20 World Cup with a win. A draw is paying 3.30 which is surely a result neither team wants.

Ecuador U20 Form & Team News


Ecuador began their U20 World Cu campaign with an unfortunate 1-1 draw against Japan. The South American U20 champions then lost 1-0 against Italy after Jackson Porozo was sent off in the 41st minute. 

Jorge Célico’s side bounced back with a 1-0 win against Mexico with Gonzalo Plata scoring the winner. Uruguay were the round of 16 opponents in Lublin, Uruguay taking an early lead but goals to Alexander Alvarado, Sergio Quintero and Gonzalo Plata securing a 3-1 victory for Ecuador and a spot in the quarter-finals.

Jorge Célico
Ecuador U20 head coach Jorge Celico could use this opportunity to give some of his fringe players a start (Getty Images)

Jose Cifuentes opened the scoring against USA with a long range strike and Jhon Espinoza put La Tricolor back in front after they conceded an equaliser. Ecuador deserved the win after hitting the post twice and being more effective in attack.

Ecuador faced Korea Republic in Lublin in the semi-finals where they fell to a 1-0 defeat. Striker Leonardo Campana hit the bar early on and a minute later fell behind after a quick free kick caught them napping.

Campana had a great chance to equalise in the final minute of stoppage time but his close-range header was expertly saved by Lee Gwanyeon. Jorge Célico may use this opportunity to give some of his lesser used players some game time.

Jesus Luis Castillo, Luis Joel Estupiñán, Jefferson Arce, Richard Mina, Daniel Segura, Stiven Plaza, Lui Loor could all get a run out in Gdynia. Ecuador U20 can be backed at 3.00 to beat Italy U20 which is a tempting price considering they dominated Italy in the group stage despite playing with 10 men.

Italy U20 vs Ecuador U20 Head to Head


Italy U20 vs Ecuador U20 have met once in the group stage at this tournament with Italy winning 1-0. Andrea Pinamonti scored in the 15th minute with Ecuador centre back Jackson Porozo sent off in the 41st minute.

The South Americans had a chance to equalise from the penalty spot, but Alessandro Plizzari saved Leonardo Campana’s spot kick and Italy held on for a nervy win despite having a man advantage.

Leonardo Campana
Ecuador's Leonardo Campana saw his penalty saved in the 2019 FIFA U20 World Cup group stage 1-0 defeat against Italy (Getty Images)

Italy U20 vs Ecuador U20 Match Up


The uncertainty surrounding team selection means this game is a risk from a betting perspective. Ecuador surely have more to play for with revenge on their minds after being unlucky to lose against Italy in the group stage.

Italy U20 vs Ecuador U20 Key Statistics


  • Italy U20 have lost 9 of their last 15 matches in all competitions.
  • Italy U20 have conceded 2+ goals in 7 of their last 12 matches in all competitions.
  • Italy U20 had 1 shot on target against Ecuador in the group stage (2019 U20 World Cup).
  • Italy U20 had 38% possession against Ecuador U20 in the group stage (2019 U20 World Cup).
  • Ecuador U20 have won 11 of their last 17 matches (all competitions).
  • Ecuador U20 have scored 2+ goals in 7 of their last 16 matches in all competitions.
  • Ecuador U20 had 62% possession against Italy U20 in the group stage (2019 U20 World Cup).
  • Ecuador U20 won the corner count 13-1 against Italy U20 in the group stage (2019 U20 World Cup).

Verdict


Ecuador have more to play for here and don’t deserve to be outsiders in the betting market. The third place match is always a risk but I am backing the South American champions to emerge victorious at 3.00.

Best Bet: Ecuador U20 Win @ 3.00 at bet365 - 3 Units

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