Scotland v Israel Betting Tips & Predictions – Tuesday 20th November 2018

A morale boosting win for Scotland on Saturday night has put them in real contention of being crowned champions of their Nations League group. Not only would the Scots gain promotion to League B in the process but they would advance to the Nations League finals in June where they will compete for a European Championship spot.

For all this to become a reality rather than just a dream, Scotland must have the beating of Israel on Tuesday night. A one goal margin of victory will do the trick but only if Israel score fewer than two goals at Hampden Park. The head to head away goal rule means that if the visitors strike twice, Scotland will be left needing to win by two clear goals.

Top Tips

Scotland to win @ 4/5

Both teams to score @ 10/11

Odds correct at time of writing but may have changed since. Check site for latest prices.

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Scotland News: Players dropping like flies

Hampden Park Football Stadium in Glasgow

National team managers can normally expect one or two withdrawals from the squad due to injury but Alex McLeish has seen nine called up players drop out. Jon McLaughlin, Craig Gordon, Charlie Mulgrew, Kevin McDonald, Stephen O’Donnell, Ryan Jack, Michael Devlin, Kieran Tierney and John McGinn all stayed home or returned to their clubs for treatment. Mulgrew, McDonald, O’Donnell, Tierney and McGinn represented Scotland during last month’s Nations League test so these are not fringe players who are missing out. Replacements have been called up so McLeish does have options to select from but not the ones he would have ideally liked.

Fletcher nets on international return

Steven Fletcher ended a 13 month absence from the international scene on Saturday night against Albania. Despite never being a favoured option for Alex McLeish, striking injuries paved the way for him to go straight into the starting line-up on his international recall. The Sheffield Wednesday man can be pleased with how he performed, leading the line well with some decent touches and passes. A goal from open play never came his way during the 4-0 win but he did manage to convert from the spot in what was his first Scotland goal since September 2016.

Israel News: Blues and Whites record biggest victory in nine years

Israel's Haifa International Stadium
איתי צורף / Itaizo, Wikimedia Commons (Image Cropped)

Israel fans have had very little to cheer about in recent years but seeing their side win 7-0 on Thursday will have brought them some joy. Guatemala are by no means formidable opponents with a world ranking of 147 (out of 211) but they only lost 3-0 to Argentina and 2-0 to Ecuador in September. Israel ran riot against the Central Americans though with both Moanes Dabour and Dia Saba grabbing a brace. The two goals will have been particularly sweet for RB Salzburg striker Dabour who marked an end to a three-year goal drought for his country.

Analysis: Scotland not fazed by injury-crisis

Speaking ahead of Saturday’s clash with Albania, Alex McLeish stated that his side’s long injury list was bad luck but he never expressed any sign of concern regarding it. No tactical changes were planned because of the withdrawals and sticking to plan A worked wonders in Shkoder. Seeing his men play so well during the 4-0 win, despite all their injuries will give the Scotland manager a great deal of confidence ahead of this winner takes all clash.

Buoyed Scots capable of back to back victories

Having Albania reduced to 10-men in Shkoder early on certainly helped the Scottish cause but take little away from their performance. Ryan Fraser was excellent out wide, as was double goalscorer James Forrest on the other flank. Ryan Christie also got regularly involved when the Scots went forward and these three will be a real danger to the Israeli defence. Although rather embarrassed when taking on Israel last month, the Scots should be a different side days after such a morale boosting performance. Their recent home record reads poorly but only because of the high quality of teams they’ve faced. Against much weaker opposition, Alex McLeish’s men look capable of claiming all three points (4/5).

Israel regaining their eye for goal

Israel have some decent quality among their attacking ranks. Mounes Dabour netted 22 league goals last season and Eran Zehavi has 47 goals from his last two campaigns. Having scored twice against Scotland and seven times against Guatemala, both during highly attacking display, you should expect Andreas Herzog’s men to find the net here. They will remain vulnerable at the other end of the pitch though. Guatemala were too weak to really test them but even Albania managed to fire 19 shots off during Israel’s last Nations League game. The visitors won’t come to Hampden Park looking for a goalless draw so both teams to score (10/11) makes for an attractive proposition in this match.

Recent Matches

Losing to Israel during their last encounter marked a rather low point for the Scots and Alex McLeish. Coming into the match, the only team the Israelis had managed to beat since November 2016 was Liechtenstein during a World Cup qualifier. The press panned the Scots after the match but they have the perfect chance to silence the critics here.

11th October 2018: Israel 2 – 1 Scotland

The scoreline suggests a competitive match but this was absolutely not the case. Despite the gulf between their world rankings, it was Israel who took the game to a shambolic Scotland. Against the run of play the visitors took the lead but their defence never looked like holding on. Israel’s two goals came in the second half, either side of John Souttar’s red card but in truth they should have had a handful more, so poor were the Scots.

28th January 1986: Israel 0 – 1 Scotland

There were plenty of empty seats in the Ramat Gan Stadium for this friendly. Those that didn’t attend didn’t miss much as there wasn’t a great deal of quality on show during the match. A brave piece of forward play from Paul McStay was enough to hand Scotland the win, the ball falling kindly to him after challenging with keeper Avi Ran.

28th April 1981: Scotland 3 - 1 Israel

Beating Israel for a second time during World Cup qualification put the Scots in a strong position in Group 6. The visitors were their own worst enemy in the match, conceding two penalties in the first half an hour which Nottingham Forest man John Robertson duly converted. David Provan extended the hosts’ lead in the second half, leading to scenes of jubilation inside Hampden Park.

25th February 1981: Israel 0 – 1 Scotland

Scotland travelled to Tel Aviv in what was by all account a tough looking encounter. There was nothing to separate the sides coming into the break but nine minutes after the restart the deadlock was broken. Israel’s failure to clear a corner saw the ball land at the feet of Kenny Dalglish who hammered the ball into the top corner form all of five yards.

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