Much was made of UEFA’s introduction of the inaugural Nations League competition as they attempted to do away with meaningless international friendlies. The prestige of the tournament aside, Gareth Southgate’s men will certainly be hoping they can bring home England’s first recognised trophy since the 1997 La Tournoi in France.
They take on a much-improved Netherlands side on Thursday, who, after missing out on the World Cup, oversaw winners France and Germany to reach the finals.
The first semi-final will see Portugal, who host the semi-finals and final, take on Switzerland, whose group victory included an emphatic 5-2 win against Belgium.
Check out the best bets for the upcoming matches here.
Portugal v Switzerland (Wednesday @ 7.45pm)
Despite making it out of their group ahead of the much-fancied Belgians and Iceland, Switzerland will come into this one as slight underdogs. They have a good record against the Portugese overall, having won more of their previous meetings. However, last time they faced Portugal, they were on the end of a 2-0 defeat in the World Cup qualifiers in 2017. You can get the same scoreline at around 11/1 at Grosvenorsport.com.
Benfica star Joao Felix is in-line to make his full debut for Portugal. He will get good service from the likes of Ronaldo and Bernardo Silva and the 19-year-old could be good value to grab a debut goal at 6/1.
Arsenal man Granit Xhaka has become the heartbeat of this Swiss team and I like him to score anytime at 8/1. They’ve scored 10 goals in their last three games, so the both teams to score market could be worth a punt at around 11/10.
Netherlands v England (Thursday @ 7.45pm)
Having made a World Cup semi-final in the summer and overcoming fellow semi-finalists Croatia and Spain in their group, England should be full of confidence. They will also be boosted by having beaten the Netherlands in Amsterdam in March 2018. You can get a repeat of the 1-0 scoreline from that night at around 7/1 at Grosvenorsport.com.
With several squad members involved heavily in Saturday’s Champions League Final, captain Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Danny Rose, Jordan Henderson and Trent Alexander-Arnold all unlikely to be involved from the start. This could give an opportunity for other players such as Marcus Rashford, who is 11/4 to score at anytime. After his impressive debut season at Dortmund, I’m backing Jadon Sancho to come through with his first England goal at around 7/2.
Virgil Van Dijk and Georginio Wijnaldum may be rested for the Dutch after their success on Saturday, and with the former yet to be dribbled past this season, England’s chances of scoring look bleak should he start. You can get the Netherlands to advance, with both teams not to score at 4/1 on Grosvenorsport.com’s bet builder.
Former United man Memphis Depay has become a key player for the Dutch, scoring in three of their last four internationals. These have included some late goals, which could make the Lyon forward good value to score last at 5/1
It may be difficult to call this one, given the unpredictable nature of the line-ups. However, I’m backing Raheem Sterling to keep up his good form for his country by scoring anytime in a 3-1 win. This is available at around 30/1 at Grosvenorsport.com.
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