England v Nigeria Predictions, Betting Tips and Previews
May 29, 2018
England begin their World Cup preparations against Nigeria at the weekend, as Gareth Southgate looks to assess his squad options ahead of Russia.
England famously drew 0-0 with Nigeria in the 2002 World Cup, before a last 16 exit at the hands of Argentina.
The Three Lions did win their only other meeting against The Super Eagles, 1-0 at Wembley Stadium.
England will have all of their squad members available, although Liverpool pair Jordan Henderson and Trent Alexander-Arnold are unlikely to feature following their Champions League final exploits.
Southgate will start with Jordan Pickford in goal, as the Everton stopper is expected to start at the World Cup, and he will play behind an experimental 3-5-2 formation.
Nigeria have plenty of Premier League, and former Premier League, representation in their squad, with Ola Aina, John Obi Mikel, Wilfred Ndidi, Ahmed Musa, Kelechi Iheanacho, Alex Iwobi and Odion Ighalo, all called up for Russia.
England v Nigeria Preview and Predictions
Southgate will use this game to fine tune his squad, and looks to make a final decision on his starting XI for the tournament, with a few spots still up for grabs.
England plays to friendly games before heading to the World Cup, and the former Middlesbrough boss will want nothing less than back to back wins before heir departure - with an England win at 4/7 in this one.
With all of his squad fit and raring to go, Southgate will pick an attacking line up, as he has done in previous games.
However it is worth noting that in their last six games, England have scored just four goals, but have conceded just one. None of these games have topped a total of over 2.5 goals, and this one is likely to follow suit, with an under 2.5 total goals bet priced at 8/11.
England to win 2-0 at 5/1
England have been functional rather than fanciful in the last six months, and Southgate is looking to develop a defensive unit that allows his forward players to be let loose. With that in mind he will be happy with another step on the road towards Russia, with a routine win.
Harry Kane to score first at 5/2
Kane has been named as captain for the World Cup, and the armband could push his game up another level, as he looks ahead to his second major tournament as an international. His record for Tottenham has been sensational against this season, with 30 Premier League goals, and he has four goals in his last four games for England.