By News Team
15th November 2021
With England on the verge of qualification for this year’s World Cup and Scotland and Wales securing play-off places, the Home Nations can afford to take their foot off the gas just a little, but they will all be looking for a positive result in their final qualifier.
We preview all three nations’ fixtures below.
San Marino v England
After a thumping 5-0 win over Albania on Friday, England will be looking to end their World Cup qualifying campaign in style against minnows San Marino, with a point needed to guarantee their qualification for Qatar.
In seven previous meetings between the sides England have scored a total of 41 goals while letting in only one. Each of their victories have been by a margin of five goals or more and three times the score has finished 5-0. Gareth Southgate’s side are a boosted 6/1 to record another 5-0 victory on Monday night.
England are 1/500 to win the game, but betting on the 15-minute result offers a price of Evens, while England in the -5 handicap are 4/5. Southgate may choose to name a very different side to the one that beat Albania, but if Harry Kane is in the line-up again he will surely have a chance of a second hat-trick in two games, at odds of 7/5.
San Marino, the 210th ranked team in the world, have lost all nine of their games in Group I, scoring only one goal in the process. It looks a case of how long they can hold the Three Lions at bay here, and in the handicap San Marino to start with +5 goals may give the home side a chance of a draw at 9/2.
Scotland v Denmark
Scotland secured their place in the play-offs with a 2-0 win over Moldova on Friday, and now face a tough test against top of the table Denmark on Monday.
While Scotland can take some confidence from the fact they have beaten the Danes in two of their last three meetings, those wins came a while ago and Denmark have been imperious in Group F, winning all their nine games so far, netting 30 times and conceding only once. While Denmark may name a weakened side, they will be eager to maintain their unbeaten record and are 13/10 to do so.
Steve Clarke’s side was outplayed in the reverse fixture in Denmark, which ended 2-0, and the Scots will have to improve if they are to take all three points and land odds of 23/10. There hasn’t been a single draw in 17 previous meetings between the sides but it’s 21/10 for this to be the first.
Wales v Belgium
A 5-1 win over Belarus moved Wales up to second in Group E and results elsewhere mean they are now assured of a play-off place, even if they eventually finish third in their group.
That means the pressure is off for their final game against Belgium on Tuesday, but Rob Page’s side can’t afford to relax when they face the group winners. Wales actually have a good record against Belgium, having won five and drawn three of the 14 previous meetings between the sides. The reverse fixture ended 3-1 in favour of the Belgians however and they are 5/4 favourites to win once again in Cardiff.
Wales have scored an average of 1.9 goals per game in qualifying while Belgium have averaged an impressive 3.4, so there could be plenty of goals in this contest. Over 2.5 goals looks an attractive proposition at odds of 21/20.