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Ireland and Croatia set for tight battle amidst host of withdrawals

| 10.08.2011

England’s game against Holland may have fallen victim to the riots engulfing London, but there is still plenty of international action to whet our appetite for the forthcoming season.

Premier League managers may view the games this week as an unwelcome distraction, but they provide plenty of opportunities for punters to make a very tidy profit…

Ireland v Croatia (Wednesday, 7.45pm)

There is nothing to separate these teams in the betting, with both sides at 13/8 to come away with a win, and there shouldn’t be anything to separate them on the pitch.

Ireland have been in impressive form recently, winning their last four games without so much as conceding a goal. However, following a host of withdrawals, Giovanni Trapattoni’s squad is threadbare.

Croatia have not scored more than one goal in their previous five away friendly games and, with Ireland so frugal at the back, this promises to be another tight affair.

Back a draw at 9/4 and under 2.5 goals at 8/13.

Wales v Australia (Wednesday, 7.45pm)

Wales and Australia meet for the first time ever in Cardiff and it’s the Socceroos who head into the game as favourites at 11/8.

Wales will put out a strong side, with Aaron Ramsey and Gareth Bale both available for selection. However, with six defeats in their previous seven games, Gary Speed’s side will have their work cut out.

Australia have lost just two of their previous 14 games and should come away with a victory against a side ranked 90 places below them in the world.

Scotland v Denmark (Wednesday, 7.45pm)

Denmark face Scotland having won their last five previous encounters – a run that stretches back to the 1986 World Cup.

This game promises to be no different, with the Scots winning just two of their previous ten friendly games.

Backing Denmark to win at 7/5 looks to be the bet.



Richard Anderson