Trent or Henderson to start? England vs Iran betting preview

Trent or Henderson to start? England vs Iran betting preview

England kick-off their 2022 World Cup campaign when they take on Iran at 1pm [UK time] on Monday afternoon.

Having made it to the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup and to the final of the European Championships two years ago, there were high hopes for England ahead of the 2022 World Cup.

A poor build-up to the tournament has dampened some expectations. England endured a dismal Nations League that saw them relegated after finishing bottom of their group behind Italy, Hungary and Germany.

However, the Three Lions still have a terrific record under Gareth Southgate at knockout competitions, so it’s no surprise to see them among the pre-tournament favourites in the betting markets to go all the way in Qatar.

Betting odds

This has been dubbed as one of the most open World Cup’s for many a year with eight or nine teams believed to stand a realistic chance of winning the competition. The World Cup betting odds reflect this as we have nine nations all priced at 19/1 or under.

England are currently 10/1 with the bookmakers to win the World Cup, making them fifth favourites behind Brazil [4/1], Argentina [11/2], France [15/2] and Spain [9/1].

Southgate’s men are expected to begin the tournament with victory over Iran on Monday. England are priced at 1/3 odds-on favourites to win this game, with Iran the 10/1 outsiders. The draw is available at 18/5.

Trent or Henderson to start?

Liverpool have just two representatives in the England squad with Trent Alexander-Arnold and Jordan Henderson flying the flag for the Merseysiders.

Alexander-Arnold is a key player for Liverpool and Reds’ fans would have him as an automatic starter for England. However, Southgate clearly doesn’t see him as a good fit in his system and Kieran Trippier is expected to start on the right flank against Iran.

Henderson may also have to make-do with a place on the bench. The Liverpool skipper is no-longer a guaranteed starter for club or country, and Southgate is widely expected to go with Declan Rice and Liverpool target Jude Bellingham in the middle of the park.

Elsewhere, Harry Maguire could start alongside John Stones despite his woeful form for Manchester United this season. Luke Shaw, Jordan Pickford and Harry Maguire are all also guaranteed starters.

Kyle Walker is an injury doubt so he may not be risked on Monday, while James Maddison is another concern for England as he’s sat out training in the build-up to the match.

Prediction

Iran manager Carlos Queiros is likely to play an ultra-defensive system which could make for a rather dull opening match. England will no doubt dominate possession and obviously have the players to hurt Iran, but we don’t see this being a high scoring game.

If England can find an early breakthrough and make Iran come out, we could see an entertaining match. However, the longer it stays 0-0 the more the Iranians will sit back. Let’s hope for a 2-0 win, but the likelihood is it will be 1-0. England 1-0 Iran