Two old rivals in soccer betting action are going to meet on the pitch in Poland on Monday afternoon in the first match in Group D festivities for both, as England takes on France.
The Brits know that they are in a heck of a lot of trouble right now. They are going to be playing without a ton of players, most notably Wayne Rooney, who is serving a two-match suspension. That means that Manager Roy Hodgson has to go on with two of the three of Andy Carroll, Jermain Defoe, and Danny Welbeck. There are a heck of a lot of others in the midfield as well that are out of the fold, as well as in defense, and a big part of the problem that this team has had emotionally is that Rio Ferdinand wasn’t selected for the club. After the 2010 World Cup when the net minders really struggled for the Three Lions, David James was left off of the roster, while Robert Green has been relegated to backup duty. Now, it is up to Joe Hart, the keeper that led Manchester City to the Premier League title this year, that is going to be the man that has to get the job done to get England through Euro 2012.
There is a lot of confidence right now for a French team that could be a real contender in Euro 2012. Yes, names like Thierry Henry and Zinedine Zidane are no longer on the team, but a very young team has a lot of options to rely on. Olivier Giroud and Karim Benzema are going to be the men that have to get the job done up front for Manager Laurent Blanc. However, the real talent on this French club is in the midfield. Florent Malouda, Samir Nasri, and Franck Ribery are all big time midfielders for big time clubs across Europe, and at the back, the combination of Gael Clichy, Laurent Koscielny, and Patrice Evra are going to likely be pillars. This is a French team that has struggled in many of the major tournaments since winning the World Cup in 1998 on their home turf. Now, they know that they are going to have to get back to the defensive brand of soccer that brought the team the most coveted trophy in the game.
The Final Word: In the end, we think that all of the injuries and suspensions really have the Brits in a heck of a lot of trouble. We think that they are vastly overrated, and we still think that, regardless of all of the problems that the team has had in the past in net, that Hart will have all of the same problems once again in this one. Taking three points in comfortable fashion definitely isn’t beyond the French.
England vs. France Prediction: England 0 – France 2
is a staff writer living in the Orlando area. He has covered NFL, MLB, college football, CFL, AFL, NBA, college basketball, NASCAR, golf, tennis, and the NHL for a number of various outlets in his career, and he has been published by a number of different media outlets, including the Orlando Sentinel and the Wall Street Journal.