Euro qualifying: Live stream, how to watch, odds; England face Italy and Cristiano Ronaldo plays for Portugal

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The first international break of 2023 is here and it promises to deliver some high quality soccer to tide you over until club action returns in a fortnight. England, France, Netherlands, Portugal, Belgium, and Spain are all in action for the first time since the FIFA 2022 World Cup which was doubly painful for Italy who were not there. It is also the first look we will get at certain sides who find themselves under new leadership ahead of the UEFA 2024 European Championship and 2026 World Cup cycle.

Here is a pick of some of the storylines to keep an eye on…

Defending champions Italy host England

The Azzurri were not in Qatar despite Roberto Mancini’s men winning the 2020 Euro title so for the Italians to go straight up against beaten Euro finalists England is pretty spicy. Italy are light on attacking options while the Three Lions have already been hit by the absences of Marcus Rashford and Mason Mount. This one will be held in Naples so expect a fiery atmosphere as the hosts try to make a winning start to their Euro title defense.

Italy vs. England

  • Date: Thursday, Mar. 23 | Time: 3:45 p.m. ET
  • Location: Stadio Diego Armando Maradona — Naples, Italy
  • TV: FS1 | Live stream: fuboTV (try for free)

Portugal launch Roberto Martinez era

Cristiano Ronaldo remains part of the Portuguese setup after a fast start to life with Al-Nassr in Saudi Arabia while Roberto Martinez oversees his first games as new head coach. The Spaniard left Belgium after their 2022 World Cup exit and there was general surprise that A Selecao went for the 49-year-old given the Red Devils’ struggles in Qatar. Things did not go much better for the Portuguese and Fernando Santos has moved on to the Poland national team. An opening game with Liechtenstein in Lisbon should be fairly straightforward for Martinez and Ronaldo to navigate.

Portugal vs. Liechtenstein

  • Date: Thursday, Mar. 23 | Time: 2:45 p.m. ET
  • Location: Estadio Jose Alvalade — Lisbon, Portugal
  • Live stream: Vix

France captain Kylian Mbappe

Didier Deschamps was handed a contract extension by French Soccer Federation (FFF) president Noel Le Graet before Le Graet was ousted by scandal. After a run to the 2022 final in Qatar, a number of familiar faces have said goodbye to the national team setup including longtime captain Hugo Lloris and defensive stalwart Raphael Varane. Paris Saint-Germain superstar Kylian Mbappe is expected to be confirmed as Les Bleus’ new skipper and his first appearance in the full-time armband should come against the Netherlands who have reappointed Ronald Koeman after he left Oranje for Barcelona.

France vs. Netherlands

  • Date: Friday, Mar. 24 | Time: 3:45 p.m. ET
  • Location: Stade de France — Saint-Denis, France
  • Live stream:

Domenico Tedesco’s Belgium debut

Tasked with picking up the Belgian side after their World Cup exit under Martinez is Domenico Tedesco who arrives after a spell with RB Leipzig. Not yet 40, the Italy-born German tactician will be one of the youngest head coaches on the international circuit and he must now rebuild the Red Devils without the likes of Eden Hazard after his international retirement. Belgium’s new era starts in Sweden up against a 41-year-old Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Sweden vs. Belgium

  • Date: Friday, Mar. 24 | Time: 3:45 p.m. ET
  • Location: Friends Arena — Solna, Sweden
  • TV: FS1

Norway lose Erling Haaland

The Norwegians might have been looking at qualifying Group A and feeling like they have a good chance to finish in the top two behind Spain but ahead of Scotland. However, losing talismanic Erling Haaland to injury, given his Manchester City form, is not an ideal start ahead of the Spain clash in Malaga. Given that the Scots open with a winnable clash against Cyprus and that both of their two opening games are away, the third game at home to Scotland could be key in the Scandinavians’ hopes of qualifying.

Spain vs. Norway

  • Date: Saturday, Mar. 25 | Time: 3:45 p.m. ET
  • Location: Estadio La Rosaleda — Malaga, Spain
  • TV: Fox Sports 2

Youthful Spain

New Spain boss Luis de la Fuente has disposed of the likes of PSG’s Sergio Ramos who he informed would not be featuring under his leadership. A fairly young group has had some older heads added as La Roja look to develop a more clinical edge than we saw in Qatar. After that opener against Norway, a trip to Scotland promises to be a tricky opening few games for the Spaniards.

Scotland vs. Spain

  • Date: Tuesday, Mar. 28 | Time: 2:45 p.m. ET
  • Location: Hampden Park — Glasgow, Scotland
  • Live stream: Vix

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