Back England For Three Massive Points
D-Day has finally arrived and England go head to head with four-time World Cup winners Italy in the group of the death which also includes Uruguay and Costa Rica. The match kicks off at 11.00pm in the Amazonia Arena in Manaus where the heat and humidity will make it difficult for both sides.
The Italians, aided by Andrea Pirlo, will look to hog the lion’s share of possession while Roy Hodgson believes his players can compete in the midfield areas where he says England will “always look to be dominant”.
Italy eliminated England after a penalty shoot out in the quarter-finals of Euro 2012 and another cagey encounter is expected in Brazil. The bookmakers can barely differentiate the match outcome with England top price 19/10, Italy 21/10 and the draw 2/1. However, those new to online betting should head over to Paddy Power where new customers have the choice of massive price boosts, 8/1 England, 7/1 Draw and 6/1 Italy.
Matt Le Tissier tips: “Drawing with Ecuador and Honduras isn’t ideal preparation for England, but this has always been the focus and Roy Hodgson’s troops are worth supporting at 19/10 with Betfred to get a massive three points.
This could be tight and the 1-0 England win at 13/2 with BetVictor appeals. There’s a bit of negativity around the England side but let’s get behind them.”
Danny Welbeck has been given the all clear on a slight thigh strain which means AlexOxlade-Chamberlain is the only player unavailable for selection. Wayne Rooney and Daniel Sturridge look assured to start up front leaving Welbeck with Raheem Sterling and Adam Lallana for places alongside the strikers.
Ross Barkley was England’s most outstanding performer in the two warm up games but the Everton midfielder may have to settle for a place on the bench and hope he can make an impact as a sub later on.