After England’s 4-0 win on Fruday at home to Moldova the World Cup Qualifiying Group reaches a crucial point with the trip to the Ukraine to play another side hoping to qualify for Brazil. A tense night awaits..

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Ukraine v England Draw at 23/10 Paddy Power

England’s group is finely poised and they have three games left to play. Ukraine away and Montenegro and Poland at home.

England are ahead of Montenegro on 15 points on goal difference having played a game less. Ukraine are only a point behind, and can go top of the Group with a win on Tuesday night. It is a crucial game

England also have selection problems. Rooney and Sturridge are ruled out through injury, whilst Welbeck’s booking against Moldova means he also misses this match. It is likely therefore that Lambert will play up top supported by Walcott and Young or Milner as England seek to do what must be their number one priority: Not to lose.

As such this is unlikely to be an enthralling spectacle for the neutral and what is demanded of England is a typical away performance the like of which many of these players will be used to producing in European competitions.

Ukraine are a more formidable opponent than the side which co-hosted the last Euros and which England beat 1-0 in the Group stages in Donetsk. Ukraine drew at the Wembley game in the Qualifying Group and on Friday scored nine past minnows San Marino. They are unbeaten under coach Mikhail Fomenko.

It should be a tight match and indeed markets expect it to be so. Under 2.5 goals for example is as low as 4/7 with some firms. I would agree with this. 0-0 and 1-1 look the most likely scorelines to me and these can be found at or near the head of the Correct Score market with 1-1 the 5-1 favourite

However the safest bet appears to me to take the leading price available on the outright draw, 23/10 with Paddy Power, in the knowledge that England will be quite content with a point, and that with an eye on the World Cup Play offs it wouldn’t be the worst result for a Ukrainian team hoping to pip Montenegro into a top two place.

Recommendation

Ukraine v England Draw at 23/10 Paddy Power