Will Southgate return glory to England?
Frank Monkhouse | 27 March 2017
8/1 to win a major tournament
England manager Gareth Southgate leads his side into Sunday’s World Cup qualifier against Lithuania with punters guessing at how many the Three Lions will win by. Five, six? You can bet on a number of markets, including handicap, right here at Coral.
Victory over the minnows of international football will go some way to cementing England’s place in next summer’s World Cup. They are already top of Group F, showing three wins and a draw, with the best of those a morale boosting 3-0 cheer vs Scotland last time.
Qualification is expected
It takes a lot to get the Wembley faithful excited these days though, and qualification no longer gets their blood pumping. It’s not so much required – as expected. England are famous for strolling through the early stages, and Southgate looks set to continue that proud tradition.
Does the gaffer have what it takes to go a step further and make a dent in the World Cup proper? More importantly, does he have the players at his disposal to do anything close to winning in Russia? Coral traders aren’t feeling incredibly patriotic on that one, and although they are no more than 1/12 to qualify as group winners, our punters can have a heavyweight 18/1 on England rolling back the years and winning a second World Cup.
Southgate – a former leader of England’s U21s – guided the colts to the 2015 European Championships, but, as a group, they failed to impress. England, dropped into pool B alongside Portugal, Sweden and Italy, ended bottom of the pile, embarrassingly. A CV of one win and two defeats saw them go down to Portugal and Italy, both quite convincingly, while beating Sweden 1-0, but needing a late goal from Lingard to achieve it.
Southgate fancied to lift silverware
The team that beat Sweden that year included the likes of Jack Butland, Harry Kane, John Stones, Jesse Lingard and Danny Ings. Southgate will have a better pool to choose from in Russia, but his lack of experience in major competitions, alongside that poor showing at U21 level, doesn’t do much to convince backers.
The football guys at Coral towers seem keen to cut Southgate a bit of slack however and believe, if given the time to grow into the challenge, and develop the young side he helped progress to senior level, then he’ll have a chance of winning silverware.
Those who agree with us on that, or football fans who simply fancy a patriotic punt, will be intrigued to see our traders offering up a Gareth Southgate themed special. Get a tempting 8/1 if you think the manager will win a major trophy during his time in charge. It doesn’t matter which one, or how he does it, if Southgate can get his hands on a major tournament winner’s medal, we’ll be paying you out at 8/1. That looks worth investment.