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England Fans Can Take Advantage of Plethora of World Cup Specials

Monday 9th June 2014
With the World Cup kicking off this week, Sean Raymond looks at the chances of England and what the bookmakers odds are saying about the chances of Roy Hodgson's men in Brazil.

The World Cup kicks off on Thursday and as always, patriotic England fans will be clamouring to follow their team on the big stage with the whole country set for a severe bout of football fever. Following the English National team at a World Cup has proven to be a hazardous pastime since 1966 but that won't stop English fans dreaming once again and there are all sorts of betting markets available in support, or indeed, against that. Not too many are predicting that England will go all the way in Brazil but there is a whole range of markets on offer to fans which could ensure that this World Cup is at least a positive one for the bank balance, if not for the heart rate!

England are facing a tough task just to qualify for from their group in Brazil with Italy, Uruguay and Costa Rica a tough looking trio of opponents by anyone's standards. Costa Rica are expected to be the weak link of the group which leaves the other three countries to fight it out for those top two places and England will need their star names to step up to the plate in such big matches. The bookmakers are struggling to split the three countries with the Three Lions available at 11/5 third favourites to win the group with Bet365 and a best price of 8/13 to progress out of the section next month in Brazil.

The Stage of Elimination betting is always a popular one when it comes to major tournaments and that is likely to be the case with England once again. As we have already mentioned, England will have to play well to make it out of the Group which is reflected in their price of 5/4 with Paddy Power to be eliminated at the first hurdle. The more positive punters will be looking further down the line with the 4/1 available about England getting knocked out in the last eight potentially an appealing price, especially given that they were eliminated at that stage in both 2002 and 2006.

There is a feel good factor to the England squad at the moment with a number of excellent young players in the squad alongside some of the more experienced names. All the attention has been on the likes of Raheem Sterling and Ross Barkley in the build-up to the tournament but if England are to progress through the group stages, you have to believe that Wayne Rooney is the key man. Rooney has plenty of experience now and is desperate to make his mark at a World Cup having never scored in one before meaning that backing the Man United man at 5/2 to be the top England goal scorer in Brazil could actually prove to be an attractive price, given his position as a guaranteed starter and his hunger to perform.

England fans will not need reminding of their history when it comes to penalty shoot-outs in the World Cup and as such there are any number of betting markets available when it comes to the dreaded 12-yard contest. England went out of the World Cup on penalties in 1990, 1998 and 2006 to name just three famous occasions and if the Three Lions do progress to the knock-out phase once again in Brazil, few would be surprised if they found themselves in another shoot-out at some stage.

Skybet have been quick off the mark with the penalty markets with the online firm currently offering 7/1 about both England winning a penalty shoot-out in Brazil and being eliminated from the world Cup on a penalty shoot-out. That could well appeal to those punters who believe England will make it through the Group, while the more patriotic punters out there might want to take the 100/1 on offer about England winning the World Cup Final on penalties, which would prove to be the ultimate irony.

One thing for sure is that whatever happens to England over the next few weeks, it is sure to be another rollercoaster ride for the fans win, lose or draw. They clearly have the talent to perform well but with expectations at a low ebb among the fans, maybe there is plenty of money to be made elsewhere, with the 11/5 on offer about them winning a tough group before being eliminated at the quarter-final stage at 4/1 perhaps the two most interesting punts from a value point of view at least.
Sean Raymond
Sean is an a passionate Liverpool fan and an experienced writer who is never short of opinion or two when it comes to the beautiful game. Liverpool have been his life long team, through thick and thin, although he is also a regular at lower league games and can often be found down on the south coast following AFC Bournemouth. He is more than happy to pick apart the major issues, even if they involved his beloved Reds while his favourite players are listed as Robbie Fowler (Hallelujah) and John Barnes among others. A keen sportsman, despite having very dodgy knees these days, Sean will be tackling the big issues head on throughout the season.

Total articles: 16

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