Euro 2016 qualifier: Wales face Andorra still in with a shout of finishing first
The hard work may have already been done, as Wales sensationally snatched an automatic spot at the Euro 2016 finals, but there could be more glory yet to come. Chris Coleman’s Dragons are 3/1 to finish first in Group B with Coral and oust Belgium from top spot in this final round of fixtures.
Gareth Bale and co are currently two points behind the leaders but, should they win and the Belgians (1/5 to claim the pool) slip-up against Israel, who are still in the hunt for a third place play-off place behind Bosnia and Herzegovina, Wales’ head-to-head record would see them leapfrog to the summit.
Wales cannot yet relax, then, though the Cardiff City stadium should be rocking upon the Dragons’ return. The Welsh are heavy odds-on favourites at 1/25 for a final crucial victory, having defeated cannon-fodder Andorra away already in the reverse.
The Andorrans are yet to record a win or even a draw from nine games of qualifying, and sit emphatically rock bottom of this pool which has proven so perilous for the Pyrenees Mountains Principality, with no points.
Coleman’s already qualified men are favourable at 14/1 for a repeat 2-1 result of their opening clash with the Andorrans, where Bale starred with a brilliant brace, or 6/1 to improve on that and shut their guests out for a 3-0 scoreline.
Real Madrid’s superstar is reportedly set to feature, despite his club’s apparent wishes for him to be rested. So, on home turf, the wizard behind Wales’ attacking potency is 11/8 to open the scoring. Though at only 5/4 to net two or more for the third time in qualifying, the Southampton academy graduate is a much better 5/1 price to hit a hat-trick.
Wales certainly seem to be planning a sensational signing-off from their successful campaign, as left back Ben Davies told press: “We all wanted this so much. This could be once in a lifetime. But first we can come back to Cardiff and try to put a performance on for a full house. We can enjoy it because we know we are there.”
Defender Davies has been part of a belligerent backline to have conceded just four goals, so the Welsh are odds-on at 4/6 to keep a clean sheet in Cardiff. To back up their resilient rearguard, there is just a 2/1 chance for both teams to score in the capital clash.
If Andorra are to get off the mark, Barcelona-born centre back Ildefons Lima (12/1 to notch anytime) is most likely, having been responsible for three of the minnows’ four strikes, with the other an own goal.
A for other Wales threats keen to get in on the attacking action, punters can take their pick from the likes of Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsey (7/2 to bag last) and Reading’s Hal Robson-Kanu (5/4 to score anytime).
Betting tip: Back Wales to celebrate in style @ 3/1 to top Group D