Is this the moment when England clinch a place in next summer’s Euro 2012 finals or will it be a memorable and shock victory for Gary Speed’s Wales which might mean the Three Lions would have to play off to feature in Poland and Ukraine?
The former scenario looks far more likely on the basis of the Three Lions’ comfortable 3-0 win in Bulgaria on Friday night, although Fabio Capello’s team have not been so sure-footed at Wembley as draws with Montenegro and Switzerland will testify.
Even so, confidence is very high following a victory which saw England three up before the interval and the odds on a home win are no bigger than 1/7 (Ladbrokes – £50 free bets), with Sky Bet offering 1/2 for those that think Capello’s men will lead at half-time and full-time. This was an outcome that occurred when the teams played at the Millennium.
The bookmakers will have been pleased to see Gary Cahill score the opening goal against Bulgaria although Wayne Rooney’s subsequent brace means that he is likely to be very popular at 5/2 (Paddy Power – £100 free betting) to break the deadlock and set England on their way.
Wales also go into this fixture with their tails up as they managed to do something on Friday that England failed in – beating Montenegro at home. The twin threat of Gareth Bale and Craig Bellamy proved too much for their opponents and Boylesports offer an amazing 22/1 that the visitors taste victory and 7/1 that the match finishes all square.
Wales’ advantage is that they have nothing to lose from attacking their opponents as they look to get into shape for a 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign which should prove to be a lot more successful than the one win and four defeats garnered in Euro 2012 qualifying.
Bellamy will be suspended for the match at Wembley, although Bale (20/1) is an obvious threat on the left flank which could see Capello amend the formation so that Chris Smalling gets more cover – although the Tottenham man drifted centrally against Montenegro.
Ashley Young is in the form of his life at the moment and the Manchester United man looks an attractive First Goalscorer bet at 6/1 (William Hill – £25 free bets) if you think Rooney is a touch short, while John Terry often gets on the end of crosses for his country and can be backed at 20/1.
There is little reason to think that Wales will score in this match and the 11/2 about a 2-0 home win looks a decent bet on the basis that the visitors will be scrapping away in front of thousands of visiting supporters.