The first of two high profile friendly matches for England takes place in Amsterdam on Friday night as The Three Lions look to warm up for the 2018 World Cup with a victory over Netherlands. Mike Norman brings us some vital stats...

Dutch Dominance

The first ever meeting between England and Holland took place on 18 May 1935 in Amsterdam, the Three Lions prevailing thanks to a solitary Fred Worrall goal. And it wasn't until 1977 that Netherlands finally tasted victory over England, winning 2-0 at Wembley.
But since the mid 80s the Dutch have been the dominant force in this fixture, famously defeating the Three Lions 3-1 on their way to winning the 1988 European Championships, and in their home match during 1994 World Cup qualification, the night Graham Taylor told the world that he did not like orange.
In fact from the last 13 meeting between England and Holland, the Three Lions can boast just one victory. It was a pretty impressive one mind, a 4-1 group win at Euro 96, the night Frank Skinner and David Baddiel had the whole of Wembley, and the millions watching at home, singing a rather popular anthem.
Gareth Southgate's men are trading at 3.00 to win in the Amsterdam Arena on Friday night, while the Dutch - now managed by Taylor's nemesis Ronald Koeman - are the 2.66favourites with the Draw available to back at 3.40.

Entertainment Guaranteed

That 4-1 win over Holland at Euro 96 - a competition that ended for the Three Lions when current boss Southgate failed from the penalty spot - was the last time these two famous sides met in competition, as all of the subsequent seven meetings were International 'friendlies'. The Dutch are unbeaten in all seven, but in recent meetings goals and entertainment have been the order of the day.
The last four matches have resulted in both teams getting on the scoresheet - a bet that is available to back at 4/5 on the Sportsbook - while a total of 14 goals were scored at an average of 3.5 per game. Over 2.5 Goals can be backed at 11/10, with Over 3.5 Goals at 11/4.

Orange Revival

Despite failing to qualify for the 2018 World Cup Netherlands have won five consecutive matches - three competitive, two friendly - going into Friday night's encounter, and the average winning margin in those games has been exactly two goals.
England meanwhile are now on a run of five consecutive non-competitive matches without a win, failing to score a goal in three of those games. You can back Holland -1 Goal on the handicap at 4/1, or Koeman's men to Win to Nil at 10/3.

Stubborn Lions

Engand have had an exceptional defensive record in their last two major championship qualifying campaigns - keeping a very impressive 16 clean sheets in 20 matches - and they have shown some similar resistance in their last two non-competitive games, preventing both Germany and Brazil from scoring in very respectable 0-0 draws.
Southgate's men can be backed at 23/10 to keep a clean sheet against the Dutch, while a third goalless draw on the spin will reward you at odds of 8/1 should it be successful.

Familiar Faces among Dutch Dangermen

Not a single member of Holland's 25-man squad has reached double figures in terms of international goals scored. Their three highest scorers are all well known in England; Liverpool midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum has eight goals for his country to his name, so too has former Manchester United winger Memphis Depay, while Ryan Babel - who spent four years at Anfield - has scored six times for his country.
In the To Score (at anytime) market Babel can be backed at 10/3, Depay at 7/2, and Wijnaldum at 8/1.

Few Goals among England's Star Men

With Harry Kane out injured, Arsenal's Danny Welbeck is the only England squad member to have reached double figures in goals for his country, netting 15 times in his 36 appearances for the Three Lions. However, he is likely to be on the bench on Friday night meaning Jamie Vardy and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain - with just six goals each to their name - could be England's highest scoring players in the starting XI.
By pure coincidence a quartet of England's brightest stars - Jack Wilshere, Raheem Sterling, Dele Alli, and Marcus Rashford - have all scored exactly two goals each for their country, but all could figure prominently in Friday's friendly, and all will be desperate to add to their tally.
To Score (at anytime) for England we can back Vardy at 13/5, Rashford at 3/1, Sterling at 7/2, Alli at 4/1, Oxlade-Chamberlain at 7/1, and Wilshere at 15/2.

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