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New-look England worth backing for Italy revenge

| 13.08.2012

England v Italy (Stade de Suisse Wankdorf, 8pm)

England will line-up with a much changed side against Italy, less than two months after The Azzurri knocked Roy Hodgson’s men out of Euro 2012.

However, Italy have lost their last three international friendlies, and this refreshed England outfit can be backed at 6/4 to make it a fourth straight non-competitive defeat for Cesare Prandelli’s team.

Team GB’s Olympic stars Tom Cleverly and Ryan Bertrand are set to make their Three Lions debuts, with the Manchester United playmaker an attractive 14/1 to open the scoring in Switzerland.

Verdict: England

Serbia v Republic of Ireland (Red Star Stadium, 8pm)

Republic of Ireland have the chance to bounce back from their Euro 2012 disappointment in Belgrade when they face Serbia.

Giovanni Trapattoni’s side are without Shay Given (retired), Robbie Keane (in MLS season) and Kevin Doyle (injured), with hosts Serbia priced at 4/5 to defeat the weakened visitors.

Premier League fans will be no stranger to Serbian defenders Branislav Ivanović and Aleksander Kolarov, and with Dortmund powerhouse Neven Subotić joining them in the home side’s back-line, the home side look good value at 6/5 to keep a clean sheet.

Verdict: Serbia

Scotland v Australia (Easter Road, 8pm)

Scotland’s squad has been shorn of Rangers players for their clash with Australia by manager Craig Levein, following the club’s drop down to the Third Division.

The draw looks a worthy proposition at 23/10, while exciting young Scottish striker Jordan Rhodes is the 11/2 favourite to open the scoring.

Verdict: Draw

Northern Ireland v Finland (Windsor Park, 7.45pm)

Northern Ireland face a tricky encounter with Finland in Belfast, as both sides play their final friendlies before tough World Cup 2014 qualifying schedules.

Michael O’Neill’s side crashed to a 6-0 defeat versus the Netherlands in their last outing, and are priced at 7/4 to fail to score again tonight.

And the away side can be found at 17/10 to complete an away victory.

Verdict: Finland



Richard Anderson