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England vs Scotland: Visitors tipped to be competitive

Kick-off: 1645, 06/02/2021

Stadium: Twickenham

TV: ITV

Scotland have given England lots of trouble in recent Six Nations encounters and are again fancied to be competitive at Twickenham this weekend.

Gregor Townsend’s men have become defensively sound and it is hard to envisage them taking a significant beating in this season’s opening contest.

Punters can get 4/5 for the visitors with 15.5 points start on the handicap list and that is our first England vs Scotland prediction.

A Look At England’s Betting Odds

England obviously warrant the utmost respect after following up last year’s Six Nations success with an Autumn Nations Cup triumph.

However, even Eddie Jones admits they have often been tough to watch during an eight-match winning run, invariably grinding out results on the back of a monotonous kicking game.

To be fair, opposing teams do tend to raise their game against the champions, who have always been regarded as the biggest scalp available for their European rivals.

“We’ve kind of got a target over our heads and everyone is trying to build us up as favourites, which is fine,” said Billy Vunipola.

“We’ve got to take that mantra on and keep playing the way we play. We’ve got to be ready for what teams are going to bring and that’s what we’re preparing to do.”

This game may also come as a bit of a culture shock to Vunipola and Saracens teammates Maro Itoje, Owen Farrell, Jamie George and Elliot Daly, who have been largely inactive this term.

The hosts are odds-on favourites for a fourth title in six years at 91/100 and should get off to a winning start.

We don’t think this will be a walk-over, though, and 7/4 for the champions to prevail by 1-12 points is added to our England vs Scotland betting tips.

A Look At Scotland’s Betting Odds

Scotland were only fourth in the table last season but emerged with plenty of credit and a winning record.

They kicked off with a 19-12 loss in Ireland, when blowing a couple of golden opportunities to score tries, and then went down 13-6 at home to England in atrocious conditions.

Townsend’s side rallied to complete a hat-trick of victories, though, obliging 17-0 in Italy, beating France 28-17 at Murrayfeld and claiming a rare 14-10 triumph in Wales.

Their Autumn Nations Cup campaign was a touch disappointing, but there was no disgrace in losses to France and Ireland following another win in Italy.

Now they will seek to push England once more, having beaten them 25-13 in Edinburgh in 2018 before an amazing 38-38 draw at Twickers two years ago.

Loosehead prop Rory Sutherland said: “England have won the last Six Nations and they’ve got an Autumn Nations Cup there as well, so we’ll be going down there with a lot of respect.

“But it’s a new campaign. It is a great feeling to be back in camp and everyone is really looking forward to it and getting ready to get back into the game.

“We’ll prepare for it as well as we can this week and do the best we can to go and do a job on them.”

The Scots have not won away to England since 1983 and are 11/2 underdogs in the England vs Scotland odds, but a lack of spectators could aid their cause.

“It is very strange playing without crowds,” added Sutherland. “In these times, it is all about creating your own atmosphere, creating a buzz yourself as a team.”

We feel this could be a cagey contest early on, so 8/11 for more points to be scored in the second half is our final England vs Scotland prediction.

Additional stats

Last result:

ENGLAND 22-19 France (AET)

Ireland 31-16 SCOTLAND

Head-to-head: Scotland 6-13 England, England 38-38 Scotland, Scotland 25-13 England, England 61-21 Scotland

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