iBet: Expect Goals When Germany Are In Town
England V Germany, kick off 8pm, ITV
Back over 2.5 goals at 4/5
The perils of betting on friendlies was illustrated for the umpteenth time when England played Chile last Friday. The problem is that normally at least one of the managers is experimenting with players and formations, so there are actually no form lines to go on. England have a strong first 11 but no real strength in depth in a number of key position. I fancy that if the teams meet in Brazil, Chile will not be able to run rings around them like they did at Wembley.
So now for Germany – a vastly superior side to England. However, this time England are playing a strong team and Germany are resting their key players including Mesut Ozil, who created 36 chances from open play in qualifying, Philipp Lahm, Manuel Neuer and Sami Khedira.
So how will England’s first team fare against Germany B? England go off a best price 21/10 with William Hill, with Germany 6/4 (Paddy Power) and the draw 5/2 (SkyBet). I can see any of those three results so can’t get involved in the match odds, although one interesting stat is that the last draw between the two in an international friendly came in 1930 – 15 matches ago, so you could certainly make a case for laying the draw at 3.5 with Betfair.
However, it should be noted that the Chile game was the first time England had failed to score in a home fixture since 2010. When England play at full strength, at home, they score. And against quality opposition they usually concede as well. And if I was to pick one international team to score for me if my life depended on it, it would be Germany. They play on the front foot and look full of goals, but they are also a bit open at the back as a result.
It’s hard to forget that they let a 4-0 lead against Sweden slip in a World Cup qualifier recently – at home – and in the last year they have also conceded at least twice against USA, Ecuador and Paraguay. They were not at full strength in the return game against Sweden – Max Kruse led the line – but they scored five times in a 5-3 victory.
In fact in their last 11 games only Ireland, the Faroes, Kazakhstan and Austria failed to score against them. England are not a great team by any means, but when they have the likes of Gerrard, Sturridge, Rooney and Townsend playing there are a danger to any side, and although I would not be going in big stakes wise, because it’s a friendly, odds of 4/5 with Ladbrokes and Stan James about there being over 2.5 goals looks fair enough on value grounds.
Perhaps the most fascinating tie of the night is in France where the home side have made things mighty, might difficult for themselves by losing 2-0 in Ukraine. One stat that their manager won’t be wanting the players to see is that no team has EVER over-come a 2-0 first leg deficit in World Cup playoffs and gone on to qualify. On paper most people believe France are better than Ukraine. But actually in the FIFA rankings, Ukraine are one place higher in 20th.
Having said that, with the likes of Ballon D’Or favourite Frank Ribery in their ranks they are the kind of team you just, well, expect to be at the finals. You can argue that they are unlucky to be in the playoffs, having drawn a five-team group including Spain where only the winners qualified.
But Ukraine’s defensive record is so ridiculously good lately – they have not conceded now for nine games – that France, although 4/9 to win the game, are 2/1 to qualify. Betting wise I found the first leg fairly straightforward and went under on goals and was a layer of France, who looked false favourites to me. This is more difficult. France have to score at least twice of course, and the longer the game goes on, the more they will have to open up.
If Ukraine score, I find it very hard to imagine France going through So they can’t go gung ho to early. Let’s not forget England could not beat Ukraine either home or away. I can imagine a 1-0 or 2-0 win for France here, but if I had to stick my neck out I can certainly see it being tight again. We successfully backed a draw at half time in the first leg last time out, and at 5/4 that could be the way to go again.betting
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