No sooner has the football season got going than it all comes to a crashing halt – for the top two divisions, anyway. Attention turns to the first international break of the season and England’s bid to secure a place at the World Cup next year.
The first match of a double header for Roy Hodgson’s men looks the most straightforward assignment, the Three Lions hosting Moldova on Friday before heading to Ukraine next week and bookies are confident that England will secure all three points at Wembley.
Indeed, supporters can’t expect to make a fortune based on a home win – BetVictor’s 1/14 chalked against Hodgson’s side the best available – so it’s fair to suggest that shrewd punters will be seeking value elsewhere.
England have played Moldova three times before, winning 3-0, 4-0 and 5-0, and you can get 18/1 at Stan James for this sequence to continue with a 6-0 romp. Another 5-0 success comes in at a skinnier 9/1 (bet365) and it’s 9/2 courtesy of betway for the hosts to notch three times without reply.
Bet365 post 4/11 against any victory ‘to nil’ for the Three Lions, it’s a safe-looking 4/9 with BetVictor for the contest to produce three or more goals and those thinking that Moldova – Skybet’s 28/1 outsiders – will take heart from Scotland’s recent visit to Wembley and stick at least one past an increasingly jittery Joe Hart, Stan James quote odds of 9/4 that both teams will score.
The best goal-related wager however, comes not in the England attack, where Hodgson is struggling for numbers, but in midfield, where the ever-reliable Frank Lampard is decent value at 6/1 (Paddy Power) to rack up his 30th goal for his country by firing the opener.