Phil your boots; City class

Our Nick Hext has two World Cup tips for England and Premier League fans to follow.

Last Updated: 12/06/14 at 08:42 Post Comment

Phil Jagielka provides an interest in the England top goalscorer market

Phil Jagielka provides an interest in the England top goalscorer market

England expects but probably not quite as much as usual.

There don't seem to be too many people dreaming of outright glory ahead of Roy Hodgson's Three Lions getting their World Cup campaign started against Italy on Saturday evening in Manaus - a city that is now a lot more known on these shores than it was a few months ago.

Avoiding defeat is vital to keep their Group D prospects in good shape. Clashes with Uruguay and Costa Rica are to come and you can be sure Hodgson will have his side set up with this in mind.

There doesn't look too much to me between the sides in Group D. England certainly have nothing to fear but plenty to respect from all three of their rivals.

I couldn't put up a confident selection for how far the Three Lions will progress - unlike our Ben Coley who feels Roy's boys could well fall at the first hurdle - but I reckon there is a bit of value to be had when looking at the specials on offer.

The England top goalscorer market has attracted a few glances.

Wayne Rooney (11/4) and Daniel Sturridge (3/1) are at the head of the betting with every firm but the contenders lower down the list are the ones who catch my eye.

Gary Cahill has already been trimmed to 40/1 but I like the look of his centre-half partner at an even bigger price.

Phil Jagielka is offered at 66/1 and I can't help but get involved.

The Everton defender netted in the 3-0 warm-up win over Peru at Wembley and just a repeat of that one strike could well be enough to get a pay-out.

England are no certainties to get beyond the group stage and I can't see too many goals arriving if they do fail to fire in Brazil.

Set-pieces will provide a threat and that puts Jagielka right in the mix. A small interest could leave you smiling as the squad return home.

Another market worth an interest for English football fans is Sky Bet's top scoring Premier League team.

Chelsea are the 7/4 favourites with the Leeds-based firm but I reckon Premier League champions Manchester City can add secure another prize with success at 4/1.

Argentina striker Sergio Aguero, Bosnia forward Edin Dzeko and Ivory Coast midfielder Yaya Toure are the three players leading the City charge for goals.

David Silva, Fernandinho, Vincent Kompany and James Milner are also playing in Brazil and could well top up the tally.

Chelsea may lead the betting but I don't trust their collection of contenders as much as I do the attacking stars from City.

Manchester United (9/2), Arsenal (5/1) and Liverpool (5/1) are also in the reckoning but City have the attacking talent to finish first again.

  • Posted at 0835 BST on 12/06/2014.

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