England will be hoping to take another giant step towards qualifying for next year’s World Cup when they visit nearest rivals Poland in Group I on Wednesday.
Gareth Southgate’s side have won their opening five matches of the qualifying campaign, scoring 17 goals and conceding just once, while they have not lost a World Cup qualifier of any note since 2009, a run of 26 matches.
The Three Lions also boast an impressive record against Poland, remaining unbeaten in the pair’s last 17 meetings, winning 11 of those games. However, their last defeat was a crucial one during qualifying for the 1974 World Cup – a tournament England failed to reach.
After a disastrous Euro 2020, Poland have bounced back with resounding victories over Albania and San Marino, scoring 11 goals in the process.
Paulo Sousa’s side have also netted the only goal England have conceded in qualifying to date – Jakub Moder’s strike in their 2-1 defeat at Wembley in March – and in Robert Lewandowski, they have a striker capable of scoring against the very best.
It would certainly be no surprise to see Poland get on the scoresheet on Wednesday, but England should ultimately prove too strong and look good value at
33/10 to win the match with both teams scoring.
Swedish Delight Expected in Greece
Sweden have won their opening three matches in qualifying Group B, including claiming a come from behind victory over Spain in Solna last week.
That forms part of an impressive run for Janne Andersson’s side, as they have only lost once in 11 matches during 2021 – with that sole defeat coming in extra time and when they were down to 10 men against Ukraine at Euro 2020.
There should certainly be plenty of confidence within the squad ahead of their trip to a Greece side that have drawn their last two qualifiers against Kosovo and Georgia.
Greece have not won a competitive match in almost a year and that does not look like changing on Wednesday, with the in-form Swedes priced at
6/5 to prevail.
Stalemate on the Cards in Skopje
Group J is one of the toughest qualifying groups to call heading into the autumn, with just four points separating the top four sides, including North Macedonia, who sit fourth in the standings ahead of their clash with third-place Romania in Skopje.
North Macedonia lost all three of their matches at Euro 2020 this summer and have since been held to qualifying draws by Armenia and Iceland.
By contrast, Romania’s form has picked up, ending a four-match losing streak by beating Iceland at the start of this international break, before following that up with a similar success against Liechtenstein.
Romania also beat North Macedonia 3-2 when they met earlier in qualifying, but Wednesday’s hosts are unbeaten in their last 10 home fixtures, which makes the draw look the most likely outcome at
*All odds correct at time of writing.