Beckham's Brain Best for England
William Hill announces the "Ultimate English Footballer"
With help from stats giants, Opta, William Hill has created quite possibly the best English player to never grace the beautiful game. The ultimate player comprises Gordon Banks' hands, Paul Gascoigne's hips, Geoff Hurst's left foot and Gary Lineker's right. The best head belongs to Sol Campbell while David Beckham's brain ties it all together. Finally, Bobby Moore's engine and Terry Cooper's heart bring the player to life.
"Who would have had Becks as the brightest brain to grace an England shirt? But the stats don't lie," said William Hill spokesman Joe Crilly.
England is currently William Hill's biggest World Cup loser, despite the absence of the ‘Ultimate English footballer' - punters have already racked up liabilities of over £2 million on the Three Lions winning the trophy. This has seen their odds cut from 33/1 to 25/1 - making them the same price as group rivals Italy, and Ronaldo powered Portugal.
The 2014 World Cup looks set to be the biggest sporting event in history with estimates suggesting that William Hill alone will take £200m from over 17m bets.
The Ultimate English Footballer:
- Hands: Gordon Banks has the best save percentage of all England goalkeepers, keeping out 89% of all shots faced. The World Cup winner has also averaged the most saves per game for the Three Lions at World Cups (3.67%)
- Engine: Of England players to have played more than three games in World Cups, 1966 World Cup skipper Bobby Moore has averaged the most touches of the ball per game (87)
- Left foot: Geoff Hurst managed five left footed goals including his hat-trick goal in the 1966 World Cup Final.
- Right foot: Gary Lineker has scored seven right-footed goals at World Cups, four more than any other Englishman. The former Leicester City player also has the best shot conversion of any regular English goalscorer, converting 45% of his shots at World Cup tournaments.
- Head: Sol Campbell has the best aerial duel percentage of all England players having contested more than 10 aerial challenges (82%). The defender also has a World Cup headed goal to his name.
- Brain: David Beckham is without doubt England's top World Cup creator. The former skipper has provided six assists at World Cups, four more than any other Englishman, as well as creating 33 chances - 14 more than his closest teammates (Ball, Peters, B Charlton)
- Heart: World Cup 1970 left-back Terry Cooper not only averages the most tackles of any England player at World Cups (5.75), but he also won more duels per game than any other player to represent the Three Lions, winning a remarkable 52 duels in his four appearances (13 per game)
- Hips: Paul Gascoigne has attempted more dribbles (56) than any other English player at World Cup finals tournaments, as well as setting up two goals; only David Beckham (six) has more assists for the Three Lions.
World Cup betting: 11/4 Brazil; 4/1 Argentina; 11/2 Spain; 13/2 Germany; 20/1 France; 22/1 Belgium; 25/1 England; 25/1 Italy; 25/1 Uruguay; 28/1 Portugal; 33/1 Colombia; 33/1 Holland; 40/1 Chile; 125/1 Russia; 125/1 Ivory Coast; 125/1 Japan; 125/1 Switzerland; 150/1 Bosnia; 200/1 Croatia; 200/1 Ecuador; 200/1 Mexico; 250/1 Ghana; 250/1 Greece; 250/1 Nigeria; 250/1 South Korea; 250/1 USA; 750/1 Australia; 750/1 Cameroon; 2000/1 Algeria; 2500/1 Costa Rica; 2500/1 Honduras; 2500/1 Iran