World Cup Predictions: Lawro’s Saturday shouts include 9/1 England v France punt

Mark Lawrenson's getting right behind England... sort of.


3pm: Morocco 1-0 Portugal
7pm: England 2-1 France


3pm: Morocco v Portugal


Switzerland got it completely wrong against Portugal, they didn’t know how to set up at the back and they were completely out of it early doors. As good as Portugal were, obviously they left Cristiano Ronaldo out, Switzerland were awful which is most unusual for them.

They’ve got really good attacking players, Portugal, but I think you can get at them at the back. I loved watching Morocco beat Spain, I was delighted when it went to extra time because I just didn’t want it to end. I wish I had a bet because you could just tell they were going to win on penalties.

They’re a good all-round team Morocco, especially defensively, and I tell you what, they don’t half work hard. Sofyan Amrabat in midfield was amazing, the right back Achraf Hakimi is a top player. Walid Regragui’s really got them playing and he only took over just before the World Cup.

I’m going to go 1-0 to Morocco here. They’ve been consistently good throughout the competition, they’ve shocked me. I just think they’ve got the bit between their teeth, the manager’s got them playing in a way now where they actually believe they can win the competition.

Every game’s a home game for them at the moment. There’ll be even more Morocco fans there for this than there was the Spain game and the noise was fantastic. The way the team play and the noise from the stands goes hand in hand.

They play with no fear, they weren’t bothered about Spain the other night. they made far better chances than the Spanish did and they’ll look to hit on the break which they’re very, very good at with their quickness and direct play.

7pm: England v France


Everyone’s making a big deal about Kylian Mbappe which is understandable but it will be interesting to see who plays right back for England, I think they might go with Kyle Walker who is lightening quick. You have to have some kind of plan to stop him getting the ball so it will also be interesting to see who plays on the right of the midfield for England.

It might be Jordan Henderson. He does the job of protecting Trent Alexander-Arnold at Liverpool so I think Henderson and Walker will play. If England go five at the back it’ll take something away from how they play.

They’ve scored lots of goals. Why would you want to take that away? Goals win games as we know. If you double up on Mbappe it means there’s a hole somewhere else and Ousmane Dembele’s a good player on the other side as well. I can’t see why Henderson and Walker can’t do a job and for Henderson to still be an effective presence in midfield.

This is by far and away the biggest game for Gareth Southgate in my opinion, bigger than the Euro final. He’s got it right and when everyone’s going on about the 0-0 draw with USA, it’s not about that. It’s about getting stronger and stronger and stronger, not conceding or losing games. I am going to go 2-1 to England.

It’s coming home… unfortunately!

England have great depth. They’ll start with two good wide players and if they’re taken off they’re replaced with two players who are just as good.

Harry Kane’s got his goal as well so his confidence will be high, as a center forward you always need a goal no matter how well the team’s doing. I think they’ll frighten the French at the back, I really do, and I still think Hugo Lloris has got a mistake in him as we’ve seen on many occasions.

All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change.


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