The Battle to Reach Qatar Continues

Another big weekend lies ahead of us but it’s the World Cup qualifiers not the Premier League to bet on. How will England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland fare in their groups? Let’s look at the key games with some betting odds.

Friday 8 October

Czech Republic v Wales (7.45pm KO)

Wales are third in Group E and have no chance of winning the group. Belgium has a nine-point lead over them, but the Welsh side are on the same number of points as the Czechs. With their Nations League seeding, Wales look to already be assured of a place in the play-offs.

They have a game in hand on the Czechs though, so avoiding defeat or even winning will boost their chances of finishing second. There’s no Gareth Bale though and without him, Wales will struggle for goals. Bale hit a hat-trick in the 3-2 win in Belarus but that’s the only game in the last five that Wales have scored in. Throw in the fact six of the last eight Czech Republic games have had under three goals and the best bet here is on under 2.5 goals. That’s 8/13 at 10bet but a side bet on the Czechs to win and under 2.5 goals is 21/10 at Paddy Power and that’s worth a bet.

Saturday 9 October

Scotland v Israel (5pm KO)

Scotland aren’t going to win Group F as Denmark have a seven-point lead. However, the Scots are in second and a point clear of opponents Israel. A win at Hampden will take them four clear of the Israelis with three games to go. That would give them a great chance of making the play-offs as two of the last three are away in the Faroe Islands and Moldova. They’ll want to get points in the bag before a final home game against the Danes.

The Scottish side have earned seven points from three home games. Israel have beaten Moldova and the Faroe Islands on their travels but lost 4-1 to Denmark and still have a trip to Austria to deal with. These two sides are no strangers to each other. They have played four times since 2020 and Scotland’s only win was on penalties at Hampden in the European Championship play-offs. All four games have had under 2.5 goals in them, back that for this game at odds of 8/13 at 888sport.

Andorra v England (7.45pm KO)

England are top of their group with a four-point lead. It’d take some spectacular results for them not to go on and win Group I. On Saturday, Gareth Southgate’s team travel to Andorra and of course they will return home with three more points. The game will be played at the Estradi National which has a capacity of only 3306.

As with the home fixture that saw England win 4-0, they will field a weakened side. Beating Hungary at home next week is far more important. Andorra have actually kept clean sheets in their last two home games. Even a weakened England are a lot better than Gibraltar and San Marino. England can win this on a -3 handicap and that’s 5/6 at Bet365.

Switzerland v Northern Ireland (7.45pm)

Italy lead Group C by six points but Switzerland has two games in hand. They host Northern Ireland who are three points behind the Swiss. The two teams met recently, and it ended goalless in Belfast. This is not a fixture that tends to be full of goals. They have had three goalless draws in the last four games and seven matches have only produced six goals.

Switzerland have had two goalless draws in a row, but one was with Italy. A bet on Switzerland winning and under 2.5 goals is 7/4 at Bet365.