England get their UEFA Nations League campaign underway on Saturday evening as they host Luis Enrique’s Spain at Wembley Stadium.
The Three Lions return home for their first domestic fixture of the year following their spectacular World Cup campaign in Russia. Reaching the semi-finals, England equalled their best ever finish in the competition on foreign soil. Elsewhere, Spain did not have a particularly positive experience in the recent championships. With Julen Lopetegui being relieved of his marching orders before the tournament, he was replaced by Fernando Hierro. The change evidently affected the team as their under-par performances resulted in a round of 16 penalty shootout defeat at the hands of hosts Russia.
Despite that, Luis Enrique’s troops are one of the favourites to win the Nations League. Odds of 4/1 are available to back the one-time World Champions to claim victory with bookmakers Paddy Power. Meanwhile, Gareth Southgate’s men are slightly further down the pecking order at 11/1. Intriguingly, the two teams are level-pegging when it comes to the meeting at Wembley. Both teams can be backed at 17/10 with BetVictor to claim victory.
One aspect that will greatly enhance the Three Lions’ chances of glory is their prolificacy in front of goal. Harry Kane claimed the golden boot at the World Cup with six goals so again could be key for the team as they search for glory. One of the undoubted stars of world football, the Tottenham Hotspur man is at 10/3 to open the scoring at Wembley, whilst Chelsea man Alvaro Morata is the most fancied for the visitors with odds of 5/1 available with William Hill to back the striker.
There are already a few players that have already been ruled out for both sides. The Three Lions are missing some key attacking outlets with Raheem Sterling and Adam Lallana having withdrawn from the squad due to a back and groin problem respectively. Elsewhere, Spain are missing former Chelsea frontman Diego Costa due to personal reasons.
One aspect that is usually expected between the two sides are usually goals. Throughout history, there has been an average of 2.76 goals per game between England and Spain. As a matter of fact, Spain have not failed to score a goal in a game since a 2-0 defeat to Italy back in June 2016. However, they have only kept one clean sheet against the Three Lions in away clashes. A clever bet, then, could be to select both teams to score at Wembley. That eventuality can be backed at 10/11 with Coral.