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Southampton and Liverpool stars are England’s World Cup winners

| 06.03.2014

England’s hopes of World Cup glory still feel pretty paper thin after a largely humdrum 1-0 win over Denmark at Wembley, but there were definite winners and losers among the fringe players hoping to book a ticket to Brazil.

The gong for best-supporting player in an international friendly would surely go to Southampton’s Adam Lallana.

A player whose reputation has grown and grown for his club this season entered the fray after an hour and added a creative spark sorely lacking in the Three Lions’ ranks up until that point.

After cutting in from the left via a silky turn, Lallana capped a fine cameo by lofting a cross to the back post for Daniel Sturridge to nod the winner and at 1/2 to make the final 23-man squad, it feels like printable money.

As we had predicted, 18-year-old Luke Shaw was introduced at half-time and just as the gifted left-back has been doing all season for Saints, performed with assuredness beyond his years.

If comparing Shaw’s 45-minute display to that of Ashley Cole’s, taking Ladbrokes up on the 2/1 about the youngster making the World Cup cut over the 1/6 on the Chelsea man is far more value.

ITV’s man-of-the-match and fellow teenager, Raheem Sterling, also brought his fine Liverpool form to the international scene, adding attraction to the 8/13 on him making the grade.

Reds revelation Jordan Henderson, an 8/11-shot, did his chances no harm either with an energetic 77-minute performance alongside his club-mate Steven Gerrard in a three-man midfield.

Things look decidedly less rosey for 2/5-rated Ross Barkley, while 7/2 on Jay Rodriguez would be the gamble the odds suggest after Roy Hodgson left him on the bench.

Worrying times also lie ahead for Manchester United pairing Tom Cleverley (6/5) and Michael Carrick (1/3) who didn’t feature and Frank Lampard’s place in the pecking order appears to have dropped further, with the veteran Chelsea midfielder lengthening to 1/3.

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.