International football is back for the final time in 2013 before we return to our preferred domestic duties this coming weekend.
We have pulled out three fixtures for Tuesday night’s both teams to score coupon involving sides who have already booked their place in Brazil next summer and are getting in those vital minutes of preparation for the biggest tournament in the World.
Holland v Colombia – 7.30pm Tuesday
There is a few exciting fixtures on Tuesday but for me this is the pick of the lot. Two very attacking sides who have no trouble finding the net with some of the biggest attacking names in football, within their squads. Last week both sides were amongst the goals against two teams who also feature later on in our coupon; Belgium and Japan. Holland played in Belgium but against Japan which ended 2-2 and Colombia were also in Belgium to play Belgium and won 2-0. Hope that makes sense.
The Dutch will be looking at the likes of Rafael van der Vaart and Arjen Robben once more to score goals after they both found the back of the next last Friday and they may need to rely on a few goals as a number of defensive casualties leave them weak at the back. Jetro Willems and Martins Indi are the two who miss out. The Oranje are unbeaten in 17 games which is quite incredible and Louis van Gaal will fight tooth and nail to defend that record especially being at home at the Amsterdam ArenA. Quite simply you would never bet against the Dutch scoring, I can see Colombia breaking their 17 game streak but not without a fight and a goal!
As demonstrated against Belgium, Colombia are game opponents, I will be surprised if they come away without scoring at least two goals here. Radamel Falcao is arguably the best striker in the world and whenever he fancies a goal he usually gets it having found the net nine times during their qualifying campaign in the CONMEBOL group. It has been argued that Colombia currently has the best squad of players they have had in their history. I cannot see them not scoring on Tuesday.
Belgium v Japan – 8.00pm Tuesday
Belgium were comfortably beaten by Colombia last time out and will be looking to bag a few goals against a Japanese outfit who are full of confidence on the back of 2-2 draw with The Netherlands. Brussels hosts the encounter; one where the two sides have met three times and Belgium have yet to be crowned victors. Will that all change on Tuesday?
World ranked number 5, Belgium will be backed as a dark horse for the finals next summer after a terrific campaign where they topped Group A with ease. If they are to give themselves a chance in Brazil they will have to beat sides like Japan on the way, so manager Wilmots should be treating this game seriously. In Group A, Belgium scored 18 goals in 10 games and after firing a blank at home last week, I cannot see lightning striking twice.
As already mentioned, Japan will be in confident mood, they put out an experimental side verses Holland and came back from two goals down to take away a 2-2 draw. The game was played in Genk so Japan have been in the country for over a week now which will also give them an advantage. Keisuke Honda and Shinji Kagawa will be the main protagonists for the away side and I can see one of them getting a goal here against this highly rated Belgium side.
England v Germany – 8.00pm Tuesday
England rolled out the young and inexperienced last Friday which resulted in a comfortable victory for quality opponents Chile, however against old rivals Germany they will be looking for a far more positive result and therefore a more positive team selection. Germany come into the fixture on the back of a draw in Italy where both teams scored however the friendly will be remembered for Sami Khedira suffering a horrendous knee injury who will obviously be missing the game at Wembley.
England have high profile players return to the side including Daniel Sturridge, Steven Gerrard, Rickie Lambert and Kyle Walker, this should make England a far tougher outfit and give them the extra quality to find the net. Failing to score at home on Friday was the first time that feat had occurred since 2010 and with the massive rivalry between the sides here I cannot see this happening again here. The fixture means a lot more to the players, manager and fans and much more will be expected from the team and that starts with a few goals.
While England have players returning, Germany will be taking the match less seriously and manager Joachin Low has rested a number of their better players including Mesut Özil, Phillipe Lahm and Goalkeeper Manuel Neuer. The Germans will still have plenty of firepower and they are bound to find the back of the net with Thomas Muller, Mario Gotze and Marco Rues likely to feature.