I looked this up a while ago - it’s the sort of thing you look up if you get into the Dake study bible or similar thing.
Some commentaries ignored this verse. Some said Jesus only meant “part of three days and three nights” - which would of course be easier to believe if Jesus had only mentioned the days. One commentary even said that Matthew had made a mistake when he wrote this.
Dake claims that when days & nights are both mentioned it cannot mean a part of three days. Cites there 1 Sam 12-13, Jonah 1:17 and others where it’s harder to see his point. He claims that that’s the reason why the guards were ordered to guard the tomb at least that long, that according to rabbinical teaching the spirit wandered round the body for three days hoping to re-enter the body, but when the spirit left corruption set in, and that embalmment did not take place until after the spirit left which was why the women were taking sweet spices to anoint Jesus (Mk16, Lk24) after the three full days and nights called “days of weeping”. He claims that the Sabbath (Jn19:31) that followed the crucifixion (a Thursday in this view) was a special sabbath, part of the Jewish festival and a special day when no servile work was to be done, as laid down in the law in Leviticus 23:6-11
Of course all of that may be hokum especially as, in connection with the resurrection, we find the phrase “the third day” eleven times (KJV) and that would mean, according to Jewish reckoning that Jesus died on a Friday. Dake prefers to ignore these 11 verses, coming up with a theory at odds with ancient Christian tradition on the basis of his interpretation of one verse.
I’ve tried to find a Catholic site that answers the question from a purely Catholic perspective - does anyone know of one? Or of very ECF that mention Friday as the day of the crucifixion? I didn’t find a catholic site - but did find one that claimed to prove, from Scripture, that Jesus rose on a Saturday. Ho hum.
Sorry - I don’t seem to have answered the question. :o