Following their defeat against Wales two weeks ago, England take on Italy as they look to get their bid for the Six Nations title back on track. The Azzurri frustrated England for long periods during their last trip to Twickenham, thanks in part to some controversial tactics at the breakdown, however the former World Cup winners have won all 24 of their previous meetings with Italy, showing the task facing the visitors this weekend.
Six Nations – England vs Italy – Twickenham Stadium, London – Saturday 9th March 16:45 UK Time
Italy have lost all three of their Six Nations fixtures in 2019, meaning that England are the firm favourites to extend their winning record over the Azzurri. The visitors performed well on home soil two weeks ago, eventually being narrowly defeated 26-16 by Ireland. England blew a first half lead to eventually lose out 21-13 against rivals Wales, meaning that their chances of winning the Grand Slam are now over.
Eddie Jones’ men had previously recorded a fine win in Dublin against Ireland on the opening weekend of the competition, before putting France to the sword at Twickenham. Winger Jonny May has three tries to his name already, while the likes of Owen Farrell and Henry Slade have also impressed.
England Team News
The hosts are without Mako Vunipola for the remainder of the Six Nations after the prop picked up an injury against Ireland, while Maro Itoje and Jack Nowell are both doubts ahead of the clash with Italy. Both Jonathan Joseph and Chris Robshaw were released from the squad earlier this week, meaning that the likes of Charlie Ewels and Ollie Thornley could make it onto the bench.
Italy Team News
Inspirational figure Sergio Parisse looks set to return to the Italian side for their trip to Twickenham, with the Number 8 having missed his sides defeat to Italy last time around. Fly-half Tommaso Allan will need to be at his best if Italy are to have any chance of getting a result against England.
Our Top Tips
It is difficult to look beyond a home win for England this weekend, due to the fact that Jones’ side will be looking for a major response from their defeat against England, along with Italy being on a 20-match losing streak in the Six Nations. As a result, our top tip for the match is to bet on England winning by a margin of between 21-30 points, which is a market available at odds of 11/4 with bookmaker Ladbrokes.