Romelu Lukaku has continued to chide Chelsea for farming him out on loan with goals by the bucketload and now Christian Benteke’s injury has offered a rare chance to hog the spotlight he can score on the way to a Belgian win to nil against Croatia.
The pair’s Belgium side are 37/20 to seal Group A glory with a victory, 23/10 to do so with a less glamorous draw and 7/5 to get turned over in Zagreb.
Lukaku has struck four times in four games for his latest adopted employers Everton.
Chelsea’s unwanted goal machine has now notched eight goals in his last nine games on loan at other Premier League clubs and he’s 5/2 to find his way onto the scoresheet.
With Benteke injured, this particular fixture represents a vital chance for him to prove that he can carry his lethal form over into duels with the international arena‘s better opposition.
There are few more enticing scorer bets than an in-form striker with something to prove and having started two games to Benteke’s seven in qualifying Lukaku has just that.
Marc Wilmots’ men have won all four of their previous Group A away games to nil.
The golden generation roadshow hasn’t given Belgium’s opponents so much as a sniff thus far, yet they are healthy 16/5 for victory without concession in Zagreb.
Given the Croatians have been sent packing without scoring against Portugal and (more encouragingly still) Scotland in their last two games on home turf Belgium’s crack away win grinders will smell blood.
Lukaku is 6/1 to notch first and that might be a price worth taking.
His nation are up against the second-best side in the group and having only bagged more than twice away from home once in qualifying 1-0 may be their most likely winning score.
The Croatian defence has been breached at least once in each of their last five games.
Knowing Scotland scored past the hosts will have Lukaku licking his lips, but he’ll have been starving himself of the very sight of a set of goalposts in preparation for feasting on a team which shipped two to Lichtenstein earlier this term.