Throne of Games, England Women All Set For World Cup Glory

In years to come their names, James, Russo, Hemp, may live alongside those of the 1966 legends Moore, Charlton and Hurst; England’s Lionesses are all set for Women’s World Cup glory when they play Spain in the final on Sunday.

Neither Spain nor England, the current European Champions, have won a World Cup before so a new hand on the trophy is a guaranteed outcome of the match, which will be played in the ANZ Stadium in Sydney, Australia.

With Spain being roiled by internecine controversy, and sacked managers, during their run to the final, England are odds-on favourites to win their country’s first football World Cup since the solitary victory at Wembley in 1966.

Betting on the Women’s World Cup, which has been joint-hosted by New Zealand and Australia, who England beat in a thrilling 3-1 semi-final match, is running on a par with levels wagered on Premier League games.

Bookmakers are offering odds of 10/11 on England lifting the trophy, a 52 percent chance of adding the World Cup to the European title they won on home soil to such fanfare last year.

Spain are Evens.

In reality, given the cauldron and anything-goes dynamics of any sporting final, whatever the odds, it’s anyone’s game.

With 17 goals in six matches, Spain–nicknamed La Roja, or The Big Red One–is the highest scorer in the competition going into Sunday’s finals. Their attacking players Jennifer Hermoso, Aitana Bonmati and Alba Redondo have scored three goals each.

England, boasting a tighter defence, also have a troika, who have scored three goals each so far in the tournament: Lauren James (also three assists); Alessia Russo and Lauren Hemp.

Russo’s heroics at this the ninth rendition of the Women’s World Cup, since it was inaugurated in 1991, have already made her the second favourite (behind England cricket captain Ben Stokes) to win this year’s prestigious BBC Sports Personality of The Year, at current odds of 4/1.

Perhaps she will follow last year’s winner, England footballer Beth Mead, who has missed the World Cup because of a serious knee injury.

If England do win on Sunday, it would be interesting to see the odds of the brilliant team manager Sarina Wiegman replacing the under-whelming Gareth Southgate as boss of the national men’s football team.

Now that would really be a turn up for the books!

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