James Moore: Losing Streak (08/07/10)

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The Independent Football

Today's bets: Fewer than 50,000 fans to turn up for England v Hungary: 100-30 (Paddy Power). England to take four points from Wales in the Euro qualifiers: 5-2 (Hills)

We're into a bit of a lull before the main event now, but Losing Streak at least notched another success with Arjen Robben to score during Holland's victory over Uruguay. With that being the case, I'm going to have a look at some of the markets on England's lap of (dis)honour against Hungary at Wembley.

The match raises an interesting question: just how many people are going to be willing to spend from £40 a ticket on turning up. That's in addition to the booking fee, the weak beer at £4 a go, and the overpriced (and not always warm) organic material that is laughably served up as food.

For those of us who don't follow one of the top clubs, part of being a football supporter is making the effort to attend, loyally, rain or shine, regardless of the result which is all too often disappointing. As a long suffering Sheffield United fan the latter is par for the course. But at least the Blades usually give their all. And they nearly always come and clap the supporters afterwards.

England, despite the players' alleged talents, didn't look like they were trying at all during the World Cup and treated those who took second mortgages out to go and watch them with contempt.

Have the Wembley faithful heard the message though? I think they might have. I remember discussing the venomous booing that greeted "Cashley" Cole after one dismal outing pre-Capello with an England fan of my acquaintance. There was much shaking of heads about this from the broadcasting fraternity who talk a lot of guff for half an hour before hopping off to the hospitality suite. My friend and I both agreed that Cole, and the rest, deserved it. There is, after all, an easy enough way to silence the boo-boys: do your job.

So, in the absence of any cut-price deal on tickets, I'm willing to take Paddy Power's 100-30 on fewer than 50,000 fans turning up. William Hill have also opened a book on how many Euro qualifying points England will take from Wales. It pains me to say it, but I think the Welsh might nick a draw during one of those matches. So I'll take their 5-2 on four points rather than the 8-15 on all six.