James Moore: Losing streak (18/06/10)
Friday 18 June 2010
Steven Gerrard to score first at 7-1 (Paddy Power)
I might be incredibly dense (it's been said in certain quarters) but I can't see why Stevie G is only the fifth favourite to break the deadlock against Algeria.
With suggestions that the only Englishman to hit the back of the net so far could take a more forward role against Group C's weakest team the best price 7-1 (Paddy Power and others at the time of writing) looks to offer attractive value.
Gerrard (right) scores nearly once every four games, only a little behind Jermain Defoe's strike rate and almost on a par with Frank Lampard's as well. Unlike the other two, however, he doesn't seem to suffer from "white shirt syndrome".
His strike rate is about the same as it is with Liverpool. By contrast, neither Lampard (who's helped by taking penalties) nor Defoe come anywhere close to replicating the goalscoring prowess they've shown for their respective clubs when turning up for international duty.
Wayne Rooney is the deserved favourite at 3-1 and one would hope his colleagues would find a way of getting him more involved in the game with the provision of a bit more service. The Algerians don't, after all, have the United States' truly stunning midfield that might worry... well, the Chileans on a good day?
But that price is anything but generous. By contrast, the 7-1 on offer for Gerrard when compared to the 11-2 against Peter Crouch and the 6-1 widely available against Lampard and Defoe looks like something of a steal.
Goals (remember them?) appear to have made something of a comeback in the last couple of days as the group phase enters its second match and teams find they either can't afford to play cagily or have a result in the bag to get them over first-match nerves.
England have a habit of flattering to deceive with the odd stellar performance during international tournaments, and they really need to blow Algeria away: goal difference could prove crucial if they want to avoid Germany (and after watching that Aussie game, they really want to avoid Germany).
Fabio Capello's side have shown the ability to score against weaker teams, even if they don't always look good. A correct score of 3-0 (7-1, Blue Square) therefore makes some appeal. Is 4-0 (14-1, same bookie) too optimistic?
Latest in Sport
Robin van Persie to Fenerbahce: Manchester United striker 'agrees to personal terms' with Turkish side
Arsenal defender Kieran Gibbs posts bizarre video of his Miami holiday being invaded by an iguana
Women's World Cup 2015: England take third place as they beat Germay in extra time with penalty by Fara Williams
Arsenal transfer news: Gunners will only consider 'astronomical offer' from Atletico Madrid for Santi Cazorla
Why is it that there’s no women’s team at Manchester United? - Michael Calvin
- 1 Isis propaganda video shows 25 Syrian soldiers executed by teenage militants in Palmyra
- 2 Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
- 3 Optical illusion turns blue demon into brunette
- 4 Right to die: Belgian doctors rule depressed 24-year-old woman has right to end her life
- 5 The biggest first date turnoff has been revealed
Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Forget little green men – aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert
Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture
More Britons believe that multiculturalism makes the country worse - not better, says poll