New Zealand vs Italy Prediction and Betting Tips
🏈 Rugby World Cup 2023 Match Preview
⏰ 29 September 2023 - 20:00 GMT +1
⏰ 30 September 2023 - 05:00 AEST
🏟 Stadium - Parc Olympique Lyonnais (Lyon)
The All Blacks' reserves got the job done against Romania last week, but the pressure is back on as New Zealand prepares to face Italy in the 2023 Rugby World Cup. After losing their opener to France, first place in Pool A is out of reach. However, wins over Italy and Uruguay should see the All Blacks cruise into the quarterfinals.
The timely bye after beating Romania allowed coach Ian Foster to rest stars like Mark Telea and Will Jordan for two weeks before the business end of the tournament. Beating Italy with a bonus point and winning margin of at least eight points would put New Zealand ahead on the standings. That would leave Italy's qualification hopes hinging on beating France and exceeding the All Blacks' winning margin against Uruguay.
The All Blacks have their backs to the wall after historic losses to South Africa and France. An emphatic win against Italy would build momentum before facing Uruguay just six days later, likely setting up a quarterfinal clash with Ireland. The All Blacks are 14-0 against Italy, averaging 62 points scored and 10 conceded. On paper, a big win looks likely.
However, Italy have been even stronger this year. They've covered the handicap in 10 of 11 matches, with the exception being a loss to Wales as favorites. Italy have put up 38+ points in four straight wins over quality opposition. Their World Cup qualification already looks assured.
Coach Kieran Crowley praised his team's fitness and depth after scoring four second half tries against Uruguay and five against Namibia. Italy should be competitive for 80 minutes against a vulnerable All Blacks outfit. Dino Lamb, Stephen Varney and Luca Morisi come into a fearless Italian team with a maiden quarterfinal at stake. An upset remains unlikely, but write the Azzurri off at your own risk.
📋 Players to watch:
- Rieko Ioane scored in his eighth minute cameo against Namibia, becoming the first All Black with tries in three 2023 games.
- Namesake Monty Ioane has scored tries in three of Italy's four straight wins and has four tries this year.
⚡ Match Facts:
- New Zealand are 14-0 against Italy historically, with an average winning margin of 50+ points.
- Italy are undefeated in 2023 when favored, beating quality opposition.
- New Zealand have struggled in 2023, with upset losses to Ireland and France.
- Italy need a win to boost quarterfinal qualification hopes.
- Points should flow freely with both teams in try-scoring form.
- The team scoring first has won Italy's last 16 matches.
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💡 Match Prediction:
New Zealand are heavily favored to win this match. Their 14-0 record against Italy and average winning margin of over 50 points suggests a comfortable win is likely. However, Italy have shown improved form in 2023. They will be competitive, especially in the first half. The All Blacks' recent struggles also make an upset possible, if unlikely. Prediction: New Zealand by 12-15 points.
Point Spread: New Zealand -14.5
- Take New Zealand to cover a 2 touchdown spread. Their superior talent and depth should see them pull away in the second half.
Moneyline: New Zealand -800, Italy +500
- No value betting the favorite at -800. Italy at +500 is tempting but the upset remains improbable. Avoid the moneyline.
Total Points: Over/Under 53.5 points
- Take the OVER. Both teams have scored plenty of tries lately. This should be a high-scoring contest.
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