Gareth Southgate is the clear favourite as the hunt for Roy Hodgson’s successor begins after England’s lamentable loss to Iceland in Euro 2016 at Nice.
Southgate, currently manager of the England U20 side, could easily be in the right place at the right time given the Three Lions start their World Cup campaign with a trip to Slovakia in the first week in September.
The former Middlesbrough boss is as short as 5/4 (from 4/1) at BetVictor to be the next permanent England manager, and he is highly thought of by the FA if not the England fans, who have hardly endorsed him on social media.
Former England chief and current ITV pundit Glenn Hoddle is 5/1, while Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe is 10/1 and Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew 12/1.
No, not a shortlist that actually gets you salivating at the mouth, but someone has got to do it. Southgate is likely to get it but, for all his foibles, it would be Hoddle for me, and it was interesting that Alan Shearer was advocating the former Spurs and England legend on TV after the Iceland embarrassment.
I like the idea of Hoddle taking some part in training and showing the England millionaires that, even at the age of 58, he is still technically more gifted than any of them.
Wales weren’t at their best against Northern Ireland last weekend and they are 19/4 to reach the semi-finals in 90 minutes against Belgium on Friday and 25/1 to lift the trophy, with France 3/1 joint favourites alongside world champions Germany.
Romelu Lukaku is 5/1 to score the opening goal and 7/4 to find the back of the net at any time. The Everton striker’s two goals against the Republic Of Ireland show just what he can do, but he continues to frustrate in equal measure.
Belgium will certainly find things a lot more difficult than they did against Hungary in the last 16 and the first goal is vital. Wales have scored first in all four of their Euro 2016 games, and are the only nation to do so. A fifth might just be enough to see them through to the semis.
We have also been betting on the next Conservative Party leader since Britain voted to leave the European Union and the Prime Minister David Cameron resigned in the immediate aftermath. Boris Johnson was immediately put in as 8/15 favourite, but there appears to be a ‘Stop Boris’ campaign among leading Conservatives and he is now out to 6/4 with Home Secretary Theresa May the new favourite.
Stephen Crabb (10/1), Jeremy Hunt (10/1) and Liam Fox (14/1) are all likely to throw their hats into the ring. Every time I look at Bojo, I think of the TV ad which currently has James Blunt as the luminary endorsing the National Lottery. It concludes: please anyone but him! I think punters and Conservative Parliamentarians are thinking exactly the same.
The next Labour leader, irrespective of the timescale, sees deputy leader Tom Watson as the 7/2 favourite, with Lisa Nandy and Dan Jarvis 5/1, Hilary Benn, John McDonnell and David Miliband 7/1. None of them are hardly household names, but it does look as if Jeremy Corbyn’s days are numbered.
BetVictor will be announcing some very exciting news with regard to Liverpool Football Club on Friday after Sadio Mane became the fifth player to make the recent move from ‘Scousehampton’ to Anfield earlier in the week. We are betting on how many Premier League goals Mane will score next term and bet:
Nine or more 5/6
Eight or fewer 5/6
For £30 million, I would hope the Senegalese forward can hit double figures in his first term, despite the embarrassment of riches the Reds have in this department, and the recommendation must be the overs.
Arsenal have been linked with a move for Daniel Sturridge in recent days and the Reds’ striker is 3/1 to be playing at the Emirates next term. Jurgen Klopp needs to offload Mario Balotelli and Christian Benteke too, although the concern is that is going to be easier said than done with the former, seemingly, looking to fight for his place.
In other transfer news, John Stones, shunned by Hodgson in France, is 1/2 to join Manchester City and Lukaku is now out to evens (from 1/3) to return to Stamford Bridge.
FOR all your sporting odds, check out BetVictor.com