Kick-off: 1700, 28/03/2021
Stadium: Arena Kombetare
England could not have asked for an easier start to their World Cup qualifying campaign but things begin to get trickier on Sunday.
The 5-0 victory against San Marino on Thursday was as one-sided as expected while Albania managed a 1-0 win against Andorra.
The hosts rarely suffer heavy defeats so we’re backing Gareth Southgate’s men for a win and under 3.5 goals at 9/10 as our opening Albania vs England prediction.
A Look At Albania’s Betting Odds
Albania go into the game as massive underdogs and clearly do not have as much talent in their team but they have several players who play at a high level.
The most notable are defenders, with Elseid Hysak, Berat Djimsiti and Marash Kumbulla all Serie A regulars this season for Napoli, Atalanta and Roma respectively.
That highlights why Albania can be tough to break down and they conceded only four goals in winning their Nations League group last year.
Their last game against top-class opposition was a 2-0 defeat at home to France in Euro 2020 qualifying while they only lost 1-0 in Turkey after conceding in stoppage time.
Looking at the Albania vs England odds, we like the look of 23/10 for the visitors to be leading 1-0 at half-time.
A Look At England’s Betting Odds
England enjoyed a routine win on Thursday night when Poland’s draw with Hungary was perhaps the most significant result in terms of their chances of winning the group.
James Ward-Prowse, Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Raheem Sterling scored in a one-sided first half, with inspired San Marino goalkeeper Elia Benedettini and wayward finishing keeping the score down.
Calvert-Lewin grabbed his second after half-time and replacement Ollie Watkins wrapped up the victory with a debut goal.
Southgate said: “Of course it’s a game we’re expected to win and win comfortably but I was particularly pleased with the mentality for the full 90 minutes.
“I think that we pressed the ball when we lost it was the biggest indication of that. The whole team were hungry to play.
“Sometimes these games have been stodgy for us in the past but I think this team can play slightly differently. We have some creative players who can open teams up.”
That is likely to be important against a well-organised Albania defence while Southgate had the luxury of keeping Harry Kane on the bench all night, meaning he should be fit and raring to go this weekend.
Kane’s quality should mean the visitors come out on top and a 2-0 win at 5/1 is our final Albania vs England prediction.
Andorra 0-1 ALBANIA – Ermir Lenjani
ENGLAND 5-0 San Marino – James Ward-Prowse, Dominic Calvert-Lewin (2), Raheem Sterling, Ollie Watkins
Head-to-head: England 2-0 Albania, Albania 1-3 England
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