Punters losing faith in Ireland World Cup hopes

Ireland have received a boost in the build-up to Saturday's World Cup playoff first leg in Denmark with left-back Stephen Ward returning to full training after a knee injury, but punters are backing the Danes to win.

When the playoff-round draw was made, Denmark were available at evens to win the first leg but they have shortened to just 3-4.

The Danes' to-qualify price has been cut from 8-11 to 4-6 this week, while Ireland have been eased from 13-10 to 11-8 to reach the finals in Russia.

There is still a fitness concern over Burnley midfielder Jeff Hendrick, who missed training on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

David Moyes gave his first interview as West Ham manager on Wednesday and praised the quality of the players he has inherited from Slaven Bilic.

However, West Ham have a relegation battle ahead of them are no bigger than 9-4 for a bottom-three finish - only Swansea and Crystal Palace are shorter in the betting.

Match in Focus

15:00 Sa 25Nov

C Palace v Stoke

Home Win Draw Away Win
Key stats
  • Palace’s only five points of the season have come from their last three home games
Expert verdict
Things are slowly picking up for Crystal Palace, who have beaten Chelsea and drawn with West Ham and Everton in their last three games at Selhurst Park. A home clash with Stoke looks winnable for the Eagles as the Potters have conceded 20 goals in their last eight league matches.

 

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