Betting: Robben attracts as Chelsea hit man

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The Independent Football

The sharp-shooters emerge tonight as Brazil and France, Ronaldo and Thierry Henry, step into the arena. Henry had been clear favourite to be the top Premiership-based scorer during the World Cup but has been joined at the head of Coral's market by Hernan Crespo at 7-2. Tim Cahill's two goals for Australia yesterday make him the leading Premiership scorer and he is a 8-1 shot to hold on to that title. "Cahill was a 100-1 shot when we opened betting," Coral's David Stevens said, "so it just goes to show how volatile this particular market might be."

Until Cahill's strikes the only goals by Premiership players at the tournament had come from Chelsea's representatives. In Coral's betting on top Chelsea scorer, Crespo is a 6-5 chance despite the dazzling display and goal by Arjen Robben for the Netherlands against Serbia. Robben is 7-2 along with Didier Drogba.

Elsewhere, those compulsive headline grabbers Wayne Rooney and Roy Keane are also exercising bookmakers' minds. According to Coral: "It now looks inevitable that Rooney will feature at some stage against Trinidad & Tobago." Correspondingly, they make it 11-10 that Rooney will start Thursday's match. Paddy Power have suspended betting on the market "as Rooney seems certain to play on Thursday," according to the firm's Ken Robertson. However Ladbrokes make him 2-1 to play in that match, but 6-4 that the Sweden game will be the start of his World Cup experience and 5-2 that he will emerge in the second round match.

Paddy Power offer 5-1 about Keane becoming the next manager of Celtic and 7-1 that he will manage the Republic of Ireland at a World Cup finals.

Top Premiership Scorer at World Cup. Coral: 7-2 Crespo, Henry, 7-1 Van Nistelrooy, 8-1 Cahill, Owen, 12-1 Drogba, Robben, Rooney, 14-1 Baros, 16-1 Lampard, Saha.

Top Chelsea Scorer at World Cup

Coral: 6-5 Crespo, 7-2 Drogba, Robben, 9-2 Lampard, 8-1 Cole, 40-1 Essien, Terry.

Rooney's First Game

Ladbrokes 2-1 Trinidad & Tobago, 6-4 Sweden, 5-2 Second Round, 12-1 Quarter-Final, 20-1 Semi-Final, 25-1 Final, 50-1 3rd/4th Playoff, 6-1 Not at all.

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