17:00 Kick Off on 7th Sept
England vs Bulgaria (September 7, 5.00pm) kicks-off England’s latest round of Euro 2020 qualifiers on Saturday before they take on Kosovo on Tuesday.
England are in a great position at the top of Group A, despite having played less games than any other team in the group. England won their opening two group matches 5-0 and 5/1, respectively against the Czech Republic and Montenegro, and anything but three points for Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions will be seen as a failure.
England come into this match having lost the UEFA Nations League Final 3-1 to The Netherlands. Before that they needed a tense penalty shootout victory to see off Switzerland in the Nations League semi-final after the match had ended 0-0 at full-time.
But it’s worth remembering that they also beat Spain and Croatia in their Nations League group and Bulgaria are below both the Czech Republic and Montenegro in Group A.
Bulgaria have just two points from their opening four games in Group A. However, after starting with draws against Montenegro and Kosovo, they lost 2-1 in the Czech Republic. They then suffered a disastrous 3-2 home defeat to Kosovo.
Bulgaria were once a half-decent team, one that was capable of holding England to a draw in the qualifying group stages for the 2000 European Championships.
However, England were much the better of the two teams when they met twice during qualifying for the 2012 European Championships. Wayne Rooney was on the scoresheet twice when England won 3-0 in Bulgaria, whilst A Jermaine Defoe hat-trick was the headline of England’s 4-0 at home.
There weren’t too many surprises in Gareth Southgate’s squad for the two games against Bulgaria and Kosovo, but the call-ups for Tyrone Mings, Mason Mount, and Aaron Wan-Bissaka suggests the England manager is very aware of who could be the best players at his disposal come Euro 2020.
Sadly, it looks like Wan-Bissaka may be injured, but it would be no surprise if Mings appears at some point after Southgate sung his praises, which included his athleticism, composure, and leadership qualities.
The full England Squad is: Tom Heaton, Jordan Pickford, Nick Pope, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Ben Chilwell, Joe Gomez, Michael Keane, Harry Maguire, Tyrone Mings, Danny Rose, Kieran Trippier, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Ross Barkley, Jordan Henderson, James Maddison, Mason Mount, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Declan Rice, Harry Winks, Harry Kane (Captain), Jesse Lingard, Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho, Raheem Sterling, Callum Wilson.
England are as low as 1/25 to beat Bulgaria, but there may be plenty of high-rollers willing to take the 1/11 on offer with one or two bookmakers.
If you’re looking for bigger odds, as England could experiment defensively, 3/1 or better about England winning and both teams to score makes some appeal.
Raheem Sterling also looks value to continue his great record of scoring at Wembley and even-money to score at any time is worth taking.