England will look to book their spot in the final of the UEFA Nations League when they take on The Netherlands in the semi-final at the Estádio D. Afonso Henriques in Portugal on Thursday night. Form Labs bring you their betting preview and tips for the game while as ever we have the value with our enhanced odds which can be found in our FanBoosts section.
Champions League Players Set To Feature
Both Gareth Southgate and Ronald Koeman will have been watching the Champions League final hoping nothing would happen to their key personnel, though the affable Dutchman will be the happiest of the pair given the way things panned out.
Not only will both of his players involved be on a high having wound up on the winning team, with Virgil van Dijk earning the man of the match award, but Georginio Wijnaldum was hooked for the bench just after the hour, ensuring the midfielder should have plenty left in the tank for this fixture.
Meanwhile, Harry Kane lasted the full 90 minutes despite not looking particularly sharp, and Southgate will need to be sure his captain is fully raring to go and merits a place in the starting line-up based on fitness.
That won’t be the only concern however, as a whole host of players will need to be assessed both mentally and physically before being included from the off.
Impressive In Qualification
These two sides have already met under current management as the Three Lions triumphed 1-0 in Amsterdam, though that was Koeman’s first game in charge and the Dutch have come one leaps and bounds forwards since then.
That they qualified for this mini tournament from a group containing the last two World Cup winners, France and Germany, was a major achievement in itself, especially when considering they didn’t even make it to the last World Cup or even Euro 2016.
In addition to the aforementioned Liverpool duo, they can call upon the rising talents of Frenkie de Jong and Matthijs de Ligt, while Memphis Depay has reignited his career at Lyon.
The former Man Utd outcast has become the main goalscorer for the Oranje with 11 goals and five assists in his last 15 appearances, and having been involved in eight of their past 11 goals, provides better value than the England captain to register on the board.
Attacking Options For England
The Three Lions’ attack could have a youthful look to it if Southgate deems it better to use Kane as a super sub rather than in the initial line-up, with Raheem Sterling, Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho a perfectly viable front three to deploy.
We certainly wouldn’t be surprised to see goals in this clash with England netting 18 times in their last five outings, including three away in Spain as well as five in each of their last two against the Czech Republic and Montenegro.
In fact, Raheem Sterling has enjoyed a sensational campaign with 25 goals for Man City across all competitions, while for England, he’s bagged six goals and two assists in his last four appearances and looks confident in the shirt these days.
Given Kane doesn’t look at his best at present, Rashford didn’t enjoy a fruitful end to the season with Man Utd, while Jadon Sancho’s main currency is assists rather than goals, the Man City wide man ought to be looking at adding his name to the scoresheet.
Van Dijk And De Ligt Crucial For The Dutch
The Netherlands may be able to call upon an enviable centre-back partnership of van Dijk and de Ligt, but although results have massively improved in recent times, the Oranje are entertaining to watch and haven’t produced many dull affairs.
Both teams have scored in seven of their last 10 matches, with each of their last three featuring at least four goals as they themselves shipped five strikes across these recent games.
They did however net eight times down the other end and with England’s weakest areas at the base of midfield and in defence, while goalkeeper Jordan Pickford endured a mistake-ridden campaign, there’s plenty of reason to back ‘overs’.
England v The Netherlands Betting Tips
This is a pretty even contest with both sides moving in the right direction. Southgate’s team may be further down along the road of development, but the timing of this fixture just off the back of UEFA’s blue-ribbon event undoubtedly favours the Netherlands.
Should the game go to extra-time, the Dutch would have to fancy themselves with fresher legs, and so we’re not convinced England should start as favourites to progress to the final.
With that in mind, the Netherlands to qualify appears a solid proposition.
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*odds subject to change.