World Cup Betting Tips: Bookmakers divided on Welbeck and Smalling spots in England's Russia 2018 squad

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The Arsenal striker and Manchester United defender are out of favour with Gareth Southgate and face a fight to be in the squad for the showpiece event

With under three months until the start of the World Cup, things are heating up as players fight to earn their seat on the plane to Russia.

The upcoming internationals provide the final opportunity for hopefuls to show they are ready to play for their country on the biggest stage of all, with strong club performances not always enough.

Gareth Southgate’s England squad is one of those with many question marks in it, especially in the goalkeeper position, and the bookmakers appear to be disagreeing about who will be in the final group.

There also appears to be plenty of disparity between different firms in who they believe the manager will opt for.

Gareth Southgate England

Welbeck to find form?

Whilst Harry Kane, Marcus Rashford and Jamie Vardy are all but assured of going to the World Cup, Southgate may want to take at least one more striker – and Danny Welbeck could be that man.

The Arsenal striker is 10/11 (1.91) with bet365 to be in the squad, but interestingly he is out at 11/4 (3.75) with Paddy Power.

Delph and Cook making waves

Moving into midfield and Lewis Cook, who is in line for his England debut against either the Netherlands or Italy, has been backed in to just 2/1 (3.0) to go to Russia with bet365.

WC Squad odds 20-03 graphic

Again, though, Paddy Power make the 21-year-old a massive 5/1 (6.0). Fellow Leeds United expat Fabian Delph, who has spent most of his time at left-back this season, is 5/4 (2.25) with the same bookmaker.

bet365, however, have the Manchester City man out at a more tempting 4/1 (5.0) and considering his versatility, Delph may find himself in the 23-man squad.

Smalling and Cahill fighting for place

Chris Smalling’s once-assured place in the England set-up appears to have been taken by John Stones and the Manchester United defender is now 7/2 (4.50) with bet365.

Paddy Power, however, are evens (2.0) on the experienced centre-back – further highlighting the uncertainty surrounding the England squad.

In fact, Gary Cahill finds himself in a similar position as Smalling, with Paddy Power pricing him as a shoo-in at only 1/9 (1.11) whilst bet365 have the Chelsea man out at a comparatively huge 5/4 (2.25).

Gary Cahill Chelsea

Liverpool defender Joe Gomez is just 1/2 (1.50) with 365 but he can be found at 5/4 (2.25) with Paddy Power.

Pope to visit Russia?

The number one shirt has been up for grabs for some time now thanks to Joe Hart’s inconsistency in goal, giving the likes of Jordan Pickford, Jack Butland and, most recently, Nick Pope the chance to impress.

But despite playing just one league game since the end of November, Hart is still odds-on at both firms whilst Pope’s best price is a tempting evens (2.0) with bet365.

Odds correct at the time of writing. Please gamble responsibly.