England kickoff their World Cup campaign on June 18 in Volgograd. The Three Lions will clash with Tunisia in their first Group G match before playing Panama six days later in Nizhny Novgorod. Gareth Southgate’s team will wrap up Group G play against Belgium on June 28 in a match that should determine the group winner.
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The Three Lions head into Russia following an undefeated qualifying campaign. Southgate’s performances as manager have been good, and there has been an improvement in England’s play since he took over for Roy Hodgson.
Four years ago, in Brazil, Hodgson was unable to secure a victory at the World Cup and his English side looked inept in all areas. England look far more dangerous than they did in Brazil, but are they good enough to make it to the World Cup final?
Predictions on England to win the World Cup (Odds: 18/1*)
Will England win the world cup?
England Squad odds start the World Cup at 18/1 to win the tournament, according to Bet365. The English were awarded a favourable draw in the group stage. England should have little difficulty in qualifying for the knockout round.
The Three Lions should get past both Tunisia and Panama with wins to set up a showdown with Belgium. Roberto Martinez’s side should also be undefeated when the nations meet. The winner, or loser, will go through to the knockout round and play a team from Group H. Once again, it was a fortune draw for England as the four teams in Group H are no better than the Three Lions on paper.
Belgium are 11/1 to win the World Cup, and despite the Red Devils having better quality players, England will give them a difficult game. Once the English get into the knockout stages, the luck of the draw will help them get further into the competition.
All in all, bookmakers are not very confident into a final victory of the England squad, even if they can do it.
England Squad to reach the final (Odds: 7/1*)
Southgate’s team is 7/1 to reach the World Cup final. It is the seventh best odds, according to Bet365. To get to the final, England have two scenarios and they both depend on where the team finishes in Group G.
If England top the group, it is expected the team will play Poland as the runners-up of Group H. An England win would then set up a quarterfinal showdown against tournament favourites Brazil (4/1 to win). France could be waiting in the semifinals, if England defeat the Brazilians. Theoretically, winning Group G could provide a more difficult road to the final than coming second.
A second place Group G finish means England would most likely play Colombia (Group H features Colombia, Poland, Japan and Senegal). If the English can win, the team could play Germany in the quarterfinals, and England match up well. The semifinals would then see a possible game against Spain or Argentina. Although it is a difficult road, it doesn’t seem as daunting as playing Brazil or France.
The odds for the runner up position (lose in final) are 10/1.
England to reach the semifinals (Odds: 3/1*)
England are 3/1 to reach the semifinals, according to Bet 365. No English World Cup team has qualified for the semifinals since 1990. Of course, this summer, British television will be awash with images of Paul Gascoigne’s tears from the tournament, if England can replicate that feat.
In the five tournaments England have played in since World Cup ’90, England have made it to the quarterfinals twice and the round of 16 twice. Then there was the awful group stage performance from the Three Lions four years ago.
If England make the semifinals, there is the chance the team could play either Argentina, Spain, France or Portugal, barring any upsets. Those are some difficult opponents.
Find below the main odds to place a bet on the stage of elimination of the Three Lions.
England to reach the quarterfinals (Odds: 5/6*)
Bet365 has installed England at 5/6 to qualify for the quarterfinals. England hasn’t made the quarterfinals since 2006 in Germany, but Southgate’s team is talented enough to get there this year.
Topping Group G gives England the chance to play the runners-up in Group H. The Three Lions could play Poland, Colombia, Senegal or Japan by winning their group. Sportsbooks have listed Poland as the most likely team to qualify in second place. A win over the Polish would then put England in the quarterfinals on July 6 in Kazan. The most likely scenario would see England play Brazil, the Group E winners. However, depending on results, the English could face off against a team from Group F, which includes Germany, Mexico, Sweden and South Korea.
Finishing second in Group G takes England up against the top team in Group H. Sportsbooks believe that team will be Colombia. A win against the South Americans and England will most likely meet Germany on July 7 in Samara.
England to finish 1st in Group G (Odds: 6/5*)
England does not have the same attacking quality as Belgium. Martinez’s side scored 43 goals in qualification, and despite their opponents being mostly poor, Belgium has an attacking edge England do not. Outside of England’s Harry Kane, it is difficult to believe the team has a striker corps capable of scoring a mass amount of goals. Jamie Vardy isn’t a top international and the likes of Marcus Rashford and Danny Welbeck don’t instil fear in opposing defences. In fact, England’s attack looks incredibly one-dimensional on paper.
Belgium are 5/6 to win the group. Compared to England, it isn’t likely that Belgium will have difficulty beating Panama or Tunisia.
There is always the lingering doubt in the back of the mind that England will struggle to get through the other two group members. At the 2010 World Cup, Robert Green’s poor goalkeeping cost England three points against the United States, and in 2014, the Three Lions struggled with preventing teams from scoring in the second half of matches.
England have the potential to go deep into the tournament in Russia. However, once again, England will be their own worst enemy. This year’s team is better than the one from 2014, but whether it is good enough to get to the final will be determined when the tournament kicks off.
All odds in this article are correct at the moment of publishing.