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England Take On Bulgaria in Euro Qualifier


England face one of those tricky away Euro draws that could potentially trip up a European qualifier campaign before it even really begins. Away fixtures in Bulgaria generally always take good sides out of their comfort zones and a raucous home crowd can be counted upon each and every time. Regardless, England go into the fixture as the odds-on favourites to grab a win.


Virtually all major bookmakers are pricing England at a 4/7 listing pre-match with the host side trading at a 5/1 price. A draw, which would be seen as a loss for Fabio Capello's men, is available at 11/4 but you reckon that the English win will be the most popular selection.

Expect this match to figure prominently on many an accumulator ticket.

Since this one isn't a friendly, don't expect too much experimentation or quirky lineups unless England really blow away the Bulgarians in the first half. Wayne Rooney is expected to lead the line and he's commanding an enticing 7/2 price tag to grab the all-important first strike of the match.

Ashley Young has been putting in some solid performances and Capello will likely look to his blossoming link-up play with Rooney as a genuine reason for his selection. Young is 7/1 to grab the first goal of the match and, if you had a gander at the two screamers he notched against Arsenal, you can see why he's an important factor on the wind and from dead ball situations.

Look for Darren Bent to get a start here as well alongside Rooney. You can expect him to be deployed in more of a poacher's role so Rooney will likely be dropping back a bit to set up plays, this makes the 9/2 first goal odds on Bent to be particularly appealing.

Tom Cleverley has been named in the squad and he likely won't be given a starting role, but expect him to feature if United look a bit uninspired in the first 45 minutes.

The match kicks off at 19:15 on Friday. 

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