England vs Costa Rica preview, betting tips and prediction
International football comes to Elland Road
England to win 2-0 @ 9/2 with Betfair
England face Costa Rica in their final warm up friendly ahead of the World Cup on Thursday evening. The national side are stepping away from Wembley and heading north to Yorkshire, and Leeds, to play at Elland Road. There aren’t too many with fond memories of facing Costa Rica, having drawn with them in the final group game of the 2014 World Cup; the Three Lions failed to quality for the knockout stages and were sent home in disgrace, while Costa Rica went on to reach the quarter finals, only to lose to Holland. Things have moved on a lot since; Gareth Southgate has taken England in a new direction, and while expectation has been higher in previous tournaments, there is a sense of excitement surrounding the team because of the young players Southgate has at his disposal.
The first half performance against Nigeria on Saturday was one of the best since Southgate took over. Harry Kane, Dele Alli and Jesse Lingard shone, while Raheem Sterling had a tough game off the back of a negative week in regards to the press. They ended up winning 2-1, but after a drop off in the second half, there will be a desire to find their best level before heading to Russia for their first game of this summer’s tournament against Tunisia. We think England will win this one comfortably.
Harry Kane to score first provides value at 12/5 with Betfair, because he is odds on to score anytime. Southgate may shuffle his pack for this game, which could give Marcus Rashford a chance to start. He can be found at evens to score anytime and 16/5 to score first. These are the players most likely to find the net, but it could be tough to get past the Costa Rican goalkeeper, Real Madrid’s Keylor Navas.
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