England hope to make it five from five against San Marino
England take on San Marino in their second Euro 2016 qualifier knowing that the result in Switzerland gives them a good platform to push on.
There will be no surprises that the Three Lions are heavily odds-on at 1/500 with Coral to overcome their opponents at Wembley, though a more enticing bet could be the margin of victory. In all four matches that the teams have played against each other, England have a 100 per cent record, having netted 26 times and conceded just once, which translates to the home side scoring an average of 6.5 goals per game.
As a result, odds of 13/2 for Roy Hodgson’s men to record a 6-0 victory could prove to be a smart punt and, with an array of attacking options that includes captain Wayne Rooney, the hero from Switzerland; Danny Welbeck, plus Raheem Sterling, there is every chance of a goal glut.
Welbeck has discovered a new lease of life since his move to Arsenal, scoring four goals in all competitions; three of which came against continental opposition. It suggests that the player fares better against personnel from in Europe, and his movement and link-up with teammates make him a handful for opponents. At 2/1 to open the scoring, these are generous odds for a striker who bagged a brace against a tough Swiss outfit, however you can get him at 4/1 to take the match ball and hit a hat-trick.
Hodgson may even consider resting Rooney, and giving chances to players such as Adam Lallana, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Jonjo Shelvey, who is line to earn his second England cap. The performance against the Swiss suggests the manager will stick with the same diamond system, though may choose to utilise Sterling alongside Welbeck with one of the aforementioned three in behind. Shelvey has been impressive this term so far, running the midfield for Swansea City, and if he starts, odds of 9/1 to strike the opening goal are good value.
Arguably the most impressive and consistent performer for the Three Lions so far this campaign has been Nathaniel Clyne, who deserves his place in the squad. It would be his first senior international cap, and well deserved, having also demonstrated an eye for the spectacular; Roberto Carlos style. Odds of 11/2 to net anytime are tempting, especially with the Southampton star a willing attacker.
For the away side, it is hard to see past a defeat, with a shock win being offered at 66/1. However, they only lost 2-0 in their opening qualifying match against Lithuania, and captain Andy Selva is confident his team can build on the performance the team gave in the second half.
“We were braver and tried to press them high up the pitch, so we saw a completely different game,” Selva said, who is 16/1 to net anytime.
“We have to play as we did in the second half in the future.”