Tunisia vs England World Cup 2018
England will have the luxury of easing into their World Cup campaign as they face Tunisia and Panama in their opening two matches, neither of whom are likely to cause the one-time World Cup winners any major problems. Mind you, England’s recent record at the World Cup has been below-par, and this is the type of matchup that will still have fans nervous ahead of kickoff.
Tunisia are making their fifth appearance at a World Cup, and their first since 2006. They went undefeated through their qualification campaign, and will bring a decent amount of form and confidence into this fixture despite having won just one of their twelve World Cup matches to date.
England too were excellent in qualifying, also going undefeated as they cruised to their sixth consecutive finals appearance. Remarkably, England have only lost three World Cup qualification matches this century, and if you throw in their European Championships qualification matches their record is 64 wins and just 6 losses. It is astounding that they have never progressed beyond the quarter-finals during this time.
Tunisia will have to produce something special to get anything out of this match. In 8 matches against European opponents at the World Cup, the Northern African nation is yet to taste victory, and you have to go back to 2006 to find their last victory over a European nation (Belarus).
England can walk this in, with complacency their biggest hurdle. They unsurprisingly start as firm favourites, paying -264 for the victory. Tunisia start as big outsiders at +800, while the draw can be obtained for +353.
You can’t go past England in this match, there’s just no way that we can see Tunisia stealing any of the three points away from them. Our prediction is a comfortable 2-0 victory for the English, who will progress to the second round, while Tunisia’s only hope for points is in their last match against Panama.
Tunisia vs England Preview
Tunisia have only scored three goals against European opponents at the World Cup, and once again we are not sure where the goals will come from for the Africans. Youssef Msakni is among the best chances – he presents a constant threat on the left-hand side and has already notched up 14 international goals for his country. He scored a hat trick in the final round of qualifying, and can’t be discounted in the player markets.
If you are of the opinion that he can score, your best bet is perhaps the any time goal scorer market, as it is unlikely the Tunisians will score first in this match (if they indeed do at all).
The English on the other hand have a number of candidates for both the any time goal scorer market and also the first goal scorer line. You simply can’t go past Harry Kane, who is coming off yet another prolific year in front of goal. Kane leads the line for England and has already notched up 12 goals in 23 appearances for the national team. If there’s one man that can lead the nation to another World Cup trophy, it is this man.
While Kane is likely to score the majority of his side’s goals, similar to how Poland’s Robert Lewandowski dominates his nation’s goal tally, England have a number of supporting acts who can help get the job done. Manchester City’s Raheem Sterling appears to have reached a new level under Pep Guardiola, in both playing ability and maturity – look for him to get among the goals in this campaign.
You will always get tempting odds in the player markets, but remember to wait for the announcement of the final lineups before you place your wager to be certain your pick is in the team. This is also sound advice for all types of betting on the World Cup.
Head to Head Alternatives
England are clear favourites, which means they won’t offer much return on investment in this match. Your best option is to parlay your bet, perhaps along with some of the other certainties like Belgium, Germany and Brazil. Even then, you will still be struggling to break the +100 mark.
Fortunately, there are alternatives. We really like the over/under market for this match. In spite of England appearing likely to breeze past the Tunisians, a quick look at their history shows that England don’t often score a lot of goals in World Cup matches – they have scored one or less in their last nine. The line is set at 2.5 and the under is set at -143, while the over is +112. It’s almost a 50/50 wager but we like the under.
As mentioned above, we are reasonably confident that England will shutout Tunisia in this match. In the ‘which teams will score?’ market, you can get odds of -111 for ‘England only’.
Finally, it’s always an option to pick the correct score of a match. Our prediction of 2-0 is one of the favourites, paying +416, while the other top pics are England 1-0 (+387) and England 3-0 (+706).
Group G Betting Odds