As England have a great chance of making the quarter-finals, Jamie Pacheco talks us through two attractive same-game multi-bets ahead of Tuesday's big game...
"Despite all the positivity around England, their clean sheets, or lack of them, are becoming a real concern. There’s no disgrace in conceding to Belgium, even a second string Belgium, but you’re unlikely to win a World Cup if you’re failing to keep clean sheets against the likes of of Panama and Tunisia."
England v Colombia
Tuesday July 3 19.00
TV: live on ITV1
For the first time in a long time there are reasons to be positive about England's chances in Russia. Rio Ferdinand is certainly pretty confident a quarter-final place beckons. But in the latest of our Same Game Multi betting columns we'll look beyond the prices on England going through in 90 minutes or otherwise. Remember that you can choose any two or more outcomes relating to the match and after you've done so, the odds on the Same Game Multi will be worked out for you. Here are two to keep in mind for Tuesday's big game.
There's no doubt as to who England's main man is in Russia. Not only is Harry Kane the England skipper but he's clearly the focal point in attack and rather like with Neymar, Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi, the team has been built around Kane. Once Gareth Southgate decided upon his three-at-the-back formation with wing-backs providing the width, the next few questions all centred around the same thing: how can we best provide service for Harry?
It's a perfectly understandable question when you consider Kane has scored 135 goals for Tottenham in all competitions across the last four seasons. His record for England is an excellent 18 goals from 26 apperances and he's a lively contender for the Golden Boot after scoring five goals in just two matches. The fact he was rested for that third group game against Belgium may have dented his chances of winning the coveted award but on the pus side he'll be fresh and raring to go here. Given this has so far been the World Cup of the penalty and that he's been pretty deadly from the spot over the past few seasons, that's just an added reason to consider the 5/4 on him scoring very fair indeed.
Despite all the positivity around England, their clean sheets, or lack of them, are becoming a real concern. There's no disgrace in conceding to Belgium, even a second string Belgium, but you're unlikely to win a World Cup if you're failing to keep clean sheets against the likes of of Panama and Tunisia.
Colombia aren't exactly goal-shy, having scored five in three games and scoring in each of their three games. They even scored after going down to 10 men very early on against Japan. There's plenty of attacking talent within the squad and if the likes of Radamel Falcao and James Rodriguez don't get you, then maybe Barcelona defender Yerry Mina will. He's scored twice already and England will need to keep an eye on him at set-pieces.
There's every chance we'll see both teams scoring here and that completes our first Same Game Multi.
There's certainly some value in going with over 1.5 first half goals,irrespective of who's getting them.
Not only did two of England's three group games have at least two goals by half-time but the tendency (at the time of writing) has been for early goals in the Last 16 with two of the three played to date having two goals before half-time.
It's a refreshing contrast to some of the latter Group games where teams weren't fussed about trying to score and preferred to work out what they had to do to make sure that they were in the next round one way or another. Either way, 14/5 is a good price about the net bulging twice before the players take a breather.
And we'll round that off by going with England to win the corners match bet. They won all three of them so far in Russia, including getting seven to Belgium's two despite being outplayed by Roberto Martinez's side in midweek. So clearly the gameplan is about gettting the ball out wide where possible and trying to provide service for Kane or settling for corners and waiting for the big men to come up for corners. It's all a little old school but it's an approach that got them the opening goal against Tunisia and half of their goals against Panama, two of which were scored by John Stones.
With the exception of a friendly against Brazil in November 2017 (England 0 corners, Brazil 2) remarkably, you'd have to go back to a friendly against Portugal in June 2016 for the last time England didn't have more corners than their opponents. So that's 25 of their last 26 games where England have had more corners. It's 4/6 they do it again.