England vs. Russia Betting Odds Preview, Euro 2016 Prediction

OddsShark.com@@OddsSharkFeatured ColumnistJune 10, 2016

England’s Wayne Rooney, right, smiles as he leaves the team hotel in Chantilly, France, Thursday, June 9, 2016. England will face Russia in a Euro 2016 Group B soccer match in Marseille on Saturday, June 11. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)
Kirsty Wigglesworth/Associated Press

After running the table in tournament qualifying, England arrives at Euro 2016 as a legitimate threat to reach the final four for the first time since 1996, opening as a +115 betting favorite (bet $100 to win $115) against Russia.

The aging Russian side looked shaky in a pair of pre-tournament losses and hits the pitch in its group-stage opener as the underdog.

Match Odds: England -115, Russia +355, Draw +235 (Matchup Report)

The Three Lions take a star-studded lineup to Euro 2016, led by captain Wayne Rooney, who is joined by Leicester City's Jamie Vardy and Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Kane, who sports attractive +1200 odds of emerging as the tourney's top goalscorer.

England powered through Euro 2016 qualifying, finishing atop the Group E table with a perfect 10-0-0 record and outscoring opponents by an eye-popping 31-3 margin.

The side carried that strong play into recent pre-tournament action, winning three straight since late May, including victories over Turkey, Australia and Portugal.

Overall, the English have been dominant since bowing out of the 2014 FIFA World Cup after failing to record a win in group-stage action. The side is an impressive 17-2-2 in 21 matches since then, with its only losses coming in friendlies against Netherlands and Spain, and it held opponents scoreless in 12 of those contests.

But the burden of England's tournament championship drought grows heavier with each passing year. It has been 50 years since the Three Lions raised the hardware at the 1966 World Cup, and they have never won at the Euro, with their best finishes coming in the semifinals in 1968 and 1996.

A veteran-laden Russian squad stumbled early on in Euro qualifying, leading to a coaching change that spurred the side to wins in its final four matches and a second-place finish on the Group G table.

However, its struggles have since returned, with losses in recent friendlies against Croatia, France and the Czech Republic leaving the side with distant +8000 odds to win Euro 2016 and claim its first championship since the Soviet Union won in 1960.

These two sides last faced each other back in 2007, when they each picked up a win in a pair of Euro 2008 qualifying matchups. They have also split a pair of meetings at past European championship tournaments, with the Three Lions winning a battle for third place in 1968 by a 2-0 score and the USSR winning a 3-1 decision in group-stage action in 1988.

England vs. Russia Prediction: 2-0 England

All betting lines data courtesy of Odds Shark. Check out the latest Euro 2016 news.

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