Opta Predicts England v Slovenia: Three Lions to surrender another lead in 18/1 bet

  • Opta
  • 3:00 min read
Kyle Walker and John Stones
Will England's defence surrender another lead on Tuesday night?

England need to avoid defeat to be guaranteed a place in the Round of 16 stage at Euro 2024, but after a below par performance v Denmark the nation is screaming out for an impressive display. Opta's Will Rook previews the clash v Slovenia...

England Superboost

Gareth Southgate's men have flown out of the blocks in both Group C encounters at Euro 2024, playing on the front foot from the first whistle and scoring early against both Serbia and Denmark.

We think England will start strongly again tonight, and because we like to play different, we're happy to pay out on another fast start for the Three Lions.

So if you fancy England to register at least one shot in the first 10 minutes against Slovenia this evening, then take advantage of our super-boosted price of 1/12.00 (from 1/41.25) now.

Football Only Bettor Euros Daily Podcast - Listen to Tuesday's tips here!

Alright then, have we all calmed down after Thursday? Good.

While England's performance in their 1-1 draw with Denmark can be politely described as desperate at times, there is plenty we can take from it going into the final group game against Slovenia.

England to get ahead early

Let's start with the good. England have started both of their matches well at Euro 2024, scoring the opening goal inside the first 18 minutes in both.

The Three Lions dominated the ball in the early stages against both Serbia and Denmark prior to their goals. Before Jude Bellingham scored against Serbia, England had 90% possession. That figure was 63% in the first 18 minutes against Denmark before Harry Kane opened his Euro 2024 account.

Against Slovenia, they face a side that have been happy to give their opposition more of the ball, letting them dictate the game - in both of their opening two matches, they have had 39% of the ball or less.

With the knowledge that a draw might not be enough to secure top spot in Group C, dependent on other results, and knowing the pattern from previous England matches, another fast start and early goal would not be unexpected.

Slovenia went in at half-time a goal down in their opening match against Denmark, with their opposition having dominated the first 45 minutes with 69% possession and eight shots to three.

England are available at 2/71.29 to score first, while they are 5/61.84 to win the first half.

Can they keep control?

It's what England do when they get into a winning position that has been the cause of such consternation at Euro 2024.

Despite dominating the ball prior to scoring, Gareth Southgate's team ultimately ended up losing the possession battle against both Serbia and Denmark. All of the opposition shots they have faced, meanwhile, have come after scoring the opening goal.

What that suggests is that England have ceded control in both games and have struggled to find a way to wrestle it back.

2413151_114_avg_positions_from_18_to_34 (1).png

That they gave up so much territory and pressure after scoring against Denmark, seemed to be in a ploy to lure their opponents out so they could exploit the space behind the opponents' wing-backs.

The problem is, if your opponent is wise to that then your pressing - like England's did in Frankfurt - looks stale.

By the time Morten Hjulmand equalised with an impressive long-range strike for Denmark in the 34th minutes, the Three Lions had managed just four touches in the opposition box.

2413151_stats_perform_dark_momentum_plot (1).jpeg

What all of that means ahead of England's final group game against Slovenia is that it would be no surprise to see another lead surrendered.

Slovenia to win the either half is available at 10/34.33, while the half-time/full-time market looks appealing at 18/119.00 for England/Draw.

Should England stand off their opponents to the same degree here, then Timi Elsnik looks a great value anytime goalscorer bet at 11/112.00. The midfielder had two shots in Slovenia's 1-1 draw with Serbia, with one coming off the post after being allowed time to dribble through the middle of the pitch.

Elsnik also provided the assist for Slovenia's opener against Serbia, so a hedge in the score or assist market might be preferable at 13/27.50.

While their attacking threat has been limited in the previous two matches, RB Leipzig striker Benjamin Sesko has had three shots with one coming off the post against Denmark.

His height (6ft5in) makes him a threat for Slovenia at corners. Kane aside, no England player who started against Denmark is taller than 6ft1in, so Sesko to score a header looks appealing at 16/117.00.

Stale going forward

England's disjointed attacking display against Denmark was alarming because of the level of the underperformance from the players.

Before they were all substituted, Phil Foden, Bukayo Saka and Kane had created chances worth just 0.34 xG.

Even Jude Bellingham, who was man of the match against Serbia, saw his influence diminished and had just 63 touches of the ball - 30 fewer than he managed in the previous match.

Their inability to show any attacking presence as the pressure on them built doesn't inspire confidence going into a potentially tense match against a team that will allow England to have the ball.

As a result, under 2.5 goals looks a good bet at 20/231.87.

Unbalanced England

One issue England will need to address going into this fixture is the balance of their attacking output.

2413151_114_3_2023_stats_perform_dark_attacking_thirds_for (1).jpegWith right-footed Kieran Trippier playing left back, they have had very little influence on that side of the pitch. Given he is playing on his weaker side, Trippier did not put a single cross into the box against Serbia or Denmark.

Foden, meanwhile, spent large parts of the match against Denmark drifting into the centre, leaving his left back exposed.

With a natural left footer that wouldn't be such an issue, but with the date of Luke Shaw's return currently unknown, we can assume that England's threat will continue to come down the right until he is available.

Kyle Walker and Saka combined well for England's opening goal against Denmark, with the former's enterprising run catching left-back Victor Kristiansen out. Walker is available at 12/113.00 to provide an assist against Slovenia, while Saka is 5/23.50.

Keeping their discipline

As a final point, it is worth mentioning that England have done well to keep their discipline despite mounting pressure.

While Conor Gallagher picked up a yellow card for a mistimed tackle after coming off the bench on Thursday, that remains their only booking of Euro 2024.

It is also only their second yellow card in a major tournament since Harry Maguire was booked in the 106th minute of the Euro 2020 final. Under 0.5 England cards is therefore worth backing at 29/10.

Now read tipster Paul Higham's tips on England v Slovenia here!

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