Oct 2010 12

The fact that opponents Montenegro have won all three matches so far to top Group G of the Euro 2012 qualifers should introduce a note of caution in the England camp, especially as Fabio Capello’s squad is missing several key players.

But there should still be enough quality in the home dressing room to extend their one hundred per cent record and justify odds of 2/9. You can pick up free bets on the game from online bookmakers here.

England will be missing John Terry, Phil Jagielka, Theo Walcott, Jermaine Defoe, Frank Lampard and the suspended James Milner against the group leaders at Wembley, but are likely to welcome back captain Rio Ferdinand for the first time since before the World Cup. The Manchester United defender will probably be partnered in the middle of the back four by Jolian Lescott, who made an impressive return to the international fold in the win in Switzerland.

Assuming the highly impressive Adam Johnson starts on the right wing, it appears Milner’s place in midfield will go to either former Middlesbrough team-mate Stewart Downing or Spurs‘ Tom Huddlestone with Darren Bent competing with Bolton’s Kevin Davies and Peter Crouch to start alongside Wayne Rooney in attack. England’s qualification record under Capello has been exemplary so far and the national team’s record at Wembley even more impressive. They haven’t lost at the revamped stadium since the ’wally with the brolly’ oversaw a 3-2 defeat by Croatia almost three years ago and I don’t expect Montenegro to dent those statitistics.

There is no doubt that Zlatko Kranjcar will be delighted by his side’s start to the campaign and the fact that they’ve yet to concede a goal. However, they were very fortunate to beat Wales in Podgorica and also had luck on their side against the Swiss last week.

The Montenegrins like to flood midfield and play on the break but England have already shown they have it in their armour to combat such tactics and roving full-backs Glenn Johnson and Ashley Cole should relish the extra rooms down the flanks.

England have been quick off the mark in recent games and another early goal against a team ranked 34 places below them in the latest FIFA table could see the floodgates open. There are plenty of free wagers available, A 4-0 England win is 11/1, while Steven Gerrard is 11/2 to score the first goal and Wayne Rooney 10/3.

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