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England v Senegal and France v Poland: Aaron Ashley's World Cup betting tips

All eyes will be fixed firmly on Gareth Southgate's England as they meet Senegal in the last 16 on Sunday, but first things first there is a knockout tie taking place between France and Poland to get the juices flowing.

England finished top of the pile in Group B, taking seven points from meetings with Iran, USA and Wales, and they are 2/9 to qualify at the expense of Senegal. 

The Three Lions are 8/15 to win in 90 minutes against the Lions of Teranga, who finished second to the Netherlands in Group A, are 10/3 to qualify and 7/1 to win in regulation time. 

The earlier last-16 contest on Sunday pits two European nations together as reigning world champions France entertain Robert Lewandowski's Poland. 

Les Bleus are as short as 1/9 to qualify while the Poles are 11/2 to spring a surprise. The two winners from Sunday's showdowns will clash in the last eight and Racing Post's Aaron Ashley gives his best tips for the two knockout contests in Qatar. 

Three Lions can prove a class above

What: England v Senegal, World Cup last 16 
Where: Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor 
When: 19:00, Sunday 4th December 2022 
How to watch: ITV1 
Odds: England 8/15, Draw 14/5, Senegal 7/1

England came through Group B without too many concerns and it would be a big disappointment were they unable to find a way past Senegal. 

Southgate's side, who were runners-up at Euro 2020, kickstarted their World Cup campaign with a free-scoring 6-2 win over Iran but they have tightened up defensively since then. 

Next time out England were held to a goalless draw by USA, in which was a laboured performance, but the Three Lions responded by beating neighbours Wales 3-0. 

England had started that game poorly too but finished strongly and may have been saving a bit for themselves for the knockout stages. 

Senegal haven't looked entirely convincing either, however. The Lions of Teranga were brushed aside 2-0 by a poor Netherlands performance in their Qatari curtain-raiser and then made hard work of beating disappointing hosts Qatar 3-1. 

Aliou Cisse's men saved their best performance for their must-win game with Ecuador, sealing their progress from Group A 2-1 victory, but their opponents appeared to wilt under the pressure. 

Senegal could be awkward opponents for England but with talisman Sadio Mane injured they may lack the firepower to land a knockout blow. 

The African champions may stand firm until half-time but the Three Lions have excellent attacking options, plus a strong bench, and could make their breakthrough after the interval. 

England have kept clean sheets in seven of their last 10 matches at major tournaments, which doesn't bode well for Senegal, but six of the Three Lions' nine tournament goals have come in the second half. 

That makes an England win to nil an attractive proposition at 11/10, while the draw-England double result is another fancied selection at 11/4

After scoring from the bench against Iran just a minute after being introduced and scoring twice in the win over Wales, Marcus Rashford will be hoping for a start. 

However, Arsenal ace Bukayo Saka looks likely to return to the starting line-up after being rested against Wales. 

He netted twice against Iran and should be fresher after that break, making odds of 15/4 that he gets on the scoresheet overpriced.

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Les Bleus should make light work of Poles

What: France v Poland, World Cup last 16 
Where: Al Thumama Stadium, Doha 
When: 15:00, Sunday 4th December 2022 
How to watch: BBC One 
Odds: France 2/7, Draw 4/1, Poland 12/1

Despite concerns surrounding their cohesiveness, doubts creeping in over manager Didier Deschamps and picking pre-tournament injuries to Karim Benzema, Paul Pogba and N'Golo Kante, France have made the last 16 with the minimum of fuss. 

Les Bleus won their opening two games against Australia and Denmark, scoring six goals and conceding only twice, and then rested their star men for the dead-rubber with Tunisia, in which they were ultimately beaten 1-0. 

But with their influential players fit and raring to go they should be too strong for a Poland side who are super reliant on talisman Robert Lewandowski. 

The Poles qualified on goal difference from Group C, having drawn 0-0 with Mexico before beating Saudi Arabia 2-0 and then losing by the same scoreline to Argentina. 

A lack of attacking impetus is Poland's downfall and this should be a comfortable success for France, who appear to be going through the gears. 

Golden boy Kylian Mbappe, who has three tournament goals, will have his eyes set on the tournament's top scorer and he is 21/20 to add to his tally against the Poles, which makes plenty of appeal. 

The reigning world champions are 3/10 for victory but backing them to win by two or more goals at 10/11 is where the value lies. 

Poland lost the shot count 23-4 in their latest 2-0 defeat to Argentina, failing to register an effort on target, and there is an evident gulf in class in this match-up with France.

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