World Cup 2018 has landed. Host nation Russia raised the curtain, and the roof, at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on Thursday 14th June. Vladimir Putin watched on as his countrymen strolled to a stylish 5-0 victory, the biggest win for a local side since 1934.
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Bookmakers were clambering over each other to cut the price on Stanislav Cherchesov’s side going all the way and it’s little wonder on the back of such an eye-catching performance. Punters can have their say on a number of markets including the 2018 world cup winner.
Brazil top the outright list despite a bitterly disappointing effort in their own competition four years ago with traders at Paddy Power offering the Samba Boys as 4/1 favourites. Defending champions Germany lead the chasing pack and you’ll find 5/1 the general feeling about two in-a-row for Joachim Low’s side. It’s difficult to argue against either living up to expectations, but what about England?
Patriotic punters can bet on Gareth Southgate’s side to win the trophy outright but those with a bit less confidence will find plenty to take their fancy in the specials markets. Here are a few ways to support the Three Lions this summer.
Gareth Southgate has said that England were “lifted” by the brilliant atmosphere at Elland Road last night.
Attendance at Wembley v Nigeria – 70,025
Attendance at Elland Road v Costa Rica – 36,104
Should we have more International games around the country? pic.twitter.com/HIPjumVEN5
— Footy Accumulators (@FootyAccums) June 8, 2018
Source: Footy Accumulators via Twitter
England will face Panama on Sunday 24th June in what is being billed as their easiest contest of three in the group stage. You’ve got to fancy the favourites to collect maximum points there and if they can bag six from the first six available it’ll set up what should be a pool decider vs Belgium the following Thursday, live on ITV from 7.00pm.
The head-to-head stats between the rivals currently stands at England 15-1 Belgium with four draws. That’s about as convincing as you’d hope to find at this level and makes the only British representatives a good bet to progress as group winners.
Raheem Sterling 🗣
“Now I am constantly thinking: ‘If I do this, something bad will come of it, if I go out tonight something bad is going to happen.”
The lad’s 23, shouldn’t have to live like that. pic.twitter.com/GNzka8hqgS
— Team FA 🏴 (@TeamFA) June 12, 2018
Source: Team FA via Twitter
Top goal scorer
There’s no surprise to see Harry Kane marked as favourite to score more goals than any other England player in Russia and that bet will stand regardless of how far England go. If they bow out at the group stage with the Tottenham striker hitting his nation’s only strike in a miserable campaign or if they go all the way to the final and he bags one more than Vardy, you’ll be a winner.
The beauty of betting on the team’s top scorer is it gives you an interest in every match involving England. You can place the same bet on all participants. 8/11 is available on the Londoner top scoring and he’s chased down by Raheem Sterling at 11/2 and Dele Alli 9/1. Vardy stands out at double-figure odds.