England v Belgium Betting Preview – 28/06/18

England v Belgium Betting Preview – 28/06/18

England

Gareth Southgate’s England have had a promising start to their World Cup campaign, winning both of their opening matches against Tunisia and most recently Panama to top Group G. They now face Belgium in the groups final game which will determine who goes through to the knockout stages as group winners, and who will enter the Round of 16 as runners-up. The Three Lions are guaranteed a spot in the next round and will definitely face either Japan, Senegal or Columbia next week, dependant on who wins Group H. Strangely enough though, it would actually work to England’s advantage if they lose this match and finish second in the group as it would mean facing either Switzerland or Sweden in the quarter final instead of Mexico or Brazil (should the Three Lions win their Round of 16 clash).

Due to already qualifying for the knockout stages, Gareth Southgate may rest several of his key players for this game against Belgium. Liverpool defender Trent Alexander-Arnold could well be handed his first start for the senior team to give Kieran Trippier a well deserved rest at right back, while Danny Rose is expected to start in place of Ashley Young on the left hand side of that dynamic back five. Elsewhere, in midfield Eric Dier could make his first appearance in Russia ahead of Jordan Henderson in that lone anchorman role, while up top either Marcus Rashford or Jamie Vardy could replace Raheem Sterling alongside leading front man Harry Kane.

After their 6-1 thrashing of Panama on Sunday, England will head into this match with plenty of confidence. Although finishing second in the group could be favourable in the long term, they’ll still want to keep up the momentum by beating the groups strongest team here. We can’t see these two sides being separated though, they’ve both got some real quality in their starting line-up’s so it should be a fantastic spectacle. Harry Kane is currently leading the race for the elusive Golden Boot award with 5 goals to his name in two games, he’ll be looking to add to that here with another goal and considering his performances so far, we think he could get on the scoresheet once more in this one. Backing the draw and Kane to score anytime would be our suggestion here!

Belgium

Roberto Martinez’ Belgium have cruised through the group stages, beating Panama 3-0 and most recently Tunisia 5-2. They have now cemented their position in the knockout stages but would go through as group winners with a win against England. Just like the Three Lions, they will probably view topping the group as a poison chalice as it would mean a tougher draw in the next round and quarter final, however that still won’t stop them going all out for the win in this clash.

With such attacking quality at their disposal, Belgium could well be the dark horses in Russia. They are yet to be tested however, so it will be interesting to see how they cope with an England side full of confidence in this one. Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku have been the standout players for ‘The Red Devils’ so far: Chelsea playmaker Hazard has scored two goals and assisted one, while Manchester United front man Lukaku is currently just a goal behind Harry Kane at the top of the scoring charts with 4 goals to his name.

Roberto Martinez has said he will rest leading man Romelu Lukaku for this match after the Manchester United front man picked up an ankle injury against Tunisia on Saturday. The 25-year-old’s injury is not thought to be serious, however as a precaution he will be given a rest this evening as there is nothing riding on this match. Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi is in line to start his first match in Russia, and after he bagged a late goal against Tunisia at the weekend he will be full of confidence, looking to make the most of his chance on the international main stage.

Both teams to score seems to be a safe bet for this clash, with both Batshuayi and Kane expected to line up against defences who have kept just one clean sheet between them thus far. That’s best priced with bookmakers Betfair at 5/6, while Kane and Batshuayi to both get on the scoresheet is priced at an enticing 9/2 with SkyBet.

Recommended Bets:

BTTS & Draw (3/1 with Bet365) – BET HERE

Harry Kane & Michy Batshuayi to score anytime (9/2 with SkyBet) – BET HERE