England are back in action on Monday following their shock 2-1 defeat against Czech Republic a couple of days ago. They will be desperate to banish that memory and return to winning ways against Bulgaria. This game will be played behind closed doors as punishment for Bulgarian fans’ racist chanting, so the atmosphere could be subdued and England should be able to ease to a comfortable victory. England and over 2.5 goals is 5/6 with Betway, and that looks appealing. Portugal are well priced to win away at high flying Ukraine on Monday, and giving Serbia a handicap against struggling Lithuania looks tempting. Both teams to score is 21/20 when Romania host Norway on Tuesday. Both teams have been in great form in front of goal, but they are both lumbered with poor defensive records, so that should be a high-scoring affair. Spain are 7/10 to win away at Sweden, after beating them 3-0 at home earlier in qualifying.
A typhoon has led to the cancellation of the final group games and we now look forward to the quarter-finals at the weekend. England should be well rested ahead of their showdown with Australia. They breezed to victory in their first three games, before their match against France was cancelled. They have not been truly tested yet, but they should make short work of an Australia team that has looked unconvincing thus far. They beat Fiji and Uruguay, but lost to Wales and then they laboured to victory against an unheralded Georgia team last time out. England half-time / full-time is 8/11 with Ladbrokes, which looks like a great bet. Ireland face South Africa in a real heavyweight clash on Sunday. They are two of the world’s best teams and it should be a cracking game. South Africa are the clear favourites, but backing Ireland to cover the handicap spread looks like an appealing option.
The greatest racehorses of the year will be crowned when Ascot hosts Champions Day on Saturday. The all-conquering Stradivarius is priced at 4/7 with Ladbrokes and a few others to win the Long Distance Cup ahead of Kew Gardens and Dee Ex Bee, and that looks like a shoo-in. Star sprinter Advertise is the 7/2 favourite to win the Champions Spring in what looks like a very competitive field. Star Catchers leads the betting for the Fillies and Mares, while Benbatl will fight for glory in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes with Circus Maximus, Lord Glitters and Magna Grecia.
Club football returns at the weekend and the early game on Saturday sees Everton host West Ham. The Toffees are on a four-game losing streak and that has seen them slip down into the relegation zone. Marco Silva could be sacked if he loses this game, so the stakes are high. West Ham are sitting comfortably in the top half of the table, although they have taken just one point from their last two matches, and Manuel Pellegrini will be keen to return to winning ways. You can find even money at Unibet and 888 Sport on a home win for Everton, and that looks interesting when you consider how badly they need three points. Chelsea have a comfortable home game against Newcastle, and they should cruise to victory in that one. Man City will need a win against Crystal Palace to reignite their stuttering title challenge. The big game sees Man Utd host Liverpool at Old Trafford. Liverpool are priced at 4/5 to win it and that looks like a great bet. They have won all eight matches so far this season, leaving them 15 points above Man Utd, who lost to Newcastle last time out.