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England v Moldova: Three points, but no walkover for Three Lions

| 06.09.2013

Having decided to name his England team already, Roy Hodgson has left no one guessing at his tactics, but truthfully, whatever XI he happened to pick at Wembley should overcome minnows Moldova without a fuss.

The fact Hodgson has felt relaxed enough to lay his cards on the table tells you this is a game England should breeze, and after pummelling the Moldovans 5-0 in Chisinau, the 1/18 on a home win won’t be half as appealing as say the 3-0 at 5/1 with Ladbrokes.

However, if a win is looking like banker territory, then punters should search elsewhere for the prime betting cuts here.

Hodgson has gone with Scotland’s scourge, Rickie Lambert, up front – more through default than anything else thanks to injuries to Wayne Rooney and Daniel Sturridge – but nevertheless, Southampton’s 15-goal man of last season is a tempter at 3/1 to score first.

Meanwhile, there is a definite goal threat posed from either side of Lambert in what looks like a three-pronged attack with Theo Walcott and Danny Welbeck, who both scored in England’s last game as well.

It’s evens that Walcott bags in an England win, while it’s 4/5 for Welbs to notch as part of an England victory.

Judging by Moldova’s recent results however, those thinking this will be another boot-filling exercise for the Three Lions should proceed cautiously.

Since that 5-0 chastening in their opening qualifier Moldova have regrouped in Group H, holding both Ukraine and Poland at home, with their next biggest defeat coming away to the Poles finishing 2-0.

Therefore, conservative estimates on England’s final tally may prove wise, with 6/5 on England to score 2-3 goals looking the pick.

Finally, England’s inability to keep a clean sheet against anyone other than San Marino in their last eight matches makes the 5/2 on both teams to score worthy of serious consideration.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.