Thursday, April 26, 2018

Prediction: England vs Estonia

Group E leaders England play host to fourth-placed Estonia in what will feel a lot like a dead-rubber match despite the fact that the former Soviet republic still has an outside chance of reaching the play-offs. But, with the Three Lions winning their first eight games, winning at Wembley is likely to prove mission impossible for the visitors.

This has been a dream campaign for England, who secured their place at the Euro 2016 with three games to spare, but the Three Lions now need to ensure they perform at the tournament finals as well. Roy Hodgson now has two more competitive fixture to experiment before the preparations for the tournament in France officially kick off, although he has hinted that he would field strong sides in the final two qualifiers. England not only won the first eight fixtures, but they did so while conceding mere three goals in the process and Slovenia remain the only side that scored past Joe Hart in the current campaign. There are no doubts that the players will give their best to extend the impressive run and keep the good atmosphere in the squad, and several missings are unlikely to cause too many problems. Wayne Rooney and Danny Ings both had to withdraw due to injury and Roy Hodgson has revealed that he will hand a starting role to Harry Kane despite Theo Walcott nominating himself for the place in attack. The good news is that Michael Carrick has been passed fit, and there is a good chance he will finally make the second appearance in the Euro 2016 Qualifying campaign having missed quite a few games through injury.

The national football team of Estonia did not enjoy a great deal of success since the country gained independence from Russia, although they did really well to finish the Euro 2012 qualifying campaign in second place, leaving the likes of Serbia, Slovenia and Northern Ireland trailing in their wake. The current campaign started with a narrow win over Slovenia, before 1-0 losses to Lithuania and England and a goalless draw with San Marino seriously hurt their chances of reaching the tournament finals. Following the home wins over San Marino and Lithuania, Estonia had a chance to remain in play-off berth had they avoided defeat in Slovenia, but another narrow loss meant that they now face an uphill task. With Sinisargid facing the likes of England and Switzerland in their final two qualifiers, it is highly unlikely they will add to their ten points. When it comes to team news, veteran goalkeeper Sergei Pareiko, Dmitri Kruglov and Henri Amier all miss out, but Ilja Antonov has been granted permission to play despite currently serving military duty. Important attacker Ats Purje faces a fitness test.


Estonia have failed to score a single goal on the road in the Euro 2016 qualifiers and with England looking quite impressive at the back, another win to nil appears on the cards. The visitors will give their best to concede as few goals as possible and we just cannot see them scoring at Wembley.

Verdict: England to win to nil

Best Odds: 1/2

Bookmaker: bet365





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