England Should Run Rampant Over Panama

Jun 23, 2018 12:41 PM EDT

England vs. Panama, 8 a.m. ET Sunday, Fox Sports 1

  • Panama +1658
  • England -458
  • Draw +510

Bet to Watch:

Over 2.5 goals -114 (Bookmaker)

Belgium have now done their bit in Group G, so it’s over to England to book their place in the Round of 16 alongside the Red Devils ahead of their big meeting next Thursday.

To do so, Gareth Southgate’s side have to beat tournament debutantes Panama and are understandably huge favorites to do so. As the match in Moscow proved on Saturday, the second match in any group is usually more open, although Tunisia’s naive endeavor against Belgium will be a warning shot to the underdogs in this one.

Panama need a point at the very least after all, so they will look to employ the same tactics that saw them go in at halftime without conceding against Belgium last week. That said, they do try to pass out from the back when possible and keep possession, so England will press hard from the start as they did in their own opening game.

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It’s known that Southgate will make two changes to his starting 11, with youngsters Ruben Loftus-Cheek (pictured above) and Marcus Rashford replacing Dele Alli and Raheem Sterling, respectively, but the tactics and formation will remain unchanged. They’ll look to swarm on the Panama defense in the early exchanges, and the pace in the side could prove too much for the Central Americans.

It caught many England fans by surprise quite how enterprising the Three Lions were in the first half against Tunisia in particular, and they eventually weathered the storm. Whether Panama have the quality to challenge their opponents remains to be seen, but if the Three Lions find a breakthrough before halftime, I’d expect Harry Kane and Co. to win comfortably, with England’s captain setting his sights on the Golden Boot.

The odds on this game to follow suit of the three before it in the group and see over 2.5 goals offering good value.

Follow Martin Laurence on Twitter
@martinlaurence7

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