Scotland vs IsraelWorld Cup, KO: 17:00 Oct 9, 2021, Hampden Park
SCOTLAND can take a giant step towards the World Cup play-offs by defeating Israel in Saturday's sell-out Hampden showdown.
Steve Clarke's side put themselves in pole position to finish in runners-up in their group behind Denmark after an outstanding 1-0 win in Vienna against Austria.
That was hugely significant because, over the years, that's exactly where Scotland have fallen down by not collecting anything away from home against teams ranked above them in the FIFA rankings.
They face an Israeli team that can very much blow hot and cold. They produced two excellent results by hammering Austria 5-2 at home which followed up a very professional 4-0 win in the Faroe Islands, only to collapse and get annihilated by the Danes 5-0 in Copenhagen.
They were weak enough defensively anyway, but two of their usual three-man defence will be missing in Glasgow and they are putting all their faith in Celtic's Nir Bitton at the back.
However, they are supremely talented up front and any Scotland player would kill for a record like Eran Zahavi, who has 31 goals in 67 internationals. Scotland's top scorer is midfielder John McGinn with ten goals.
How the bookies view it
Recent head to heads
These countries have become almost like derby rivals – they've met six times in three different competitions in the past three years. Scotland have only won one game and Israel two, both at home.
The latest clash finished 1-1 as can be seen below.
Players to watch
Lydon Dykes is in great form for QPR and, although he's not prolific, will be a real nuisance for Israel with his work rate. He's on six goals in 13 games this season for club and country and is 11/5 with bet365 to score at Hampden.
Zahavi has 12 goals in 19 games for PSV Eindhoven and Israel this season and appears to have been underrated by the bookies since he is 11/4 to score at Hampden with bet365.
Anything else catch the eye?
With Clarke finally having accepted a two-man strikeforce of Che Adams and Lyndon Dykes is Scotland's best route towards a win, there's no reason why the hosts can't take advantage of their defensive issues and collect a massive three points.
However, Israel are very good up front and could conceivably play Zahavi and Mu'nas Dabbur with attacking options on the bench too. They should be dangerous enough to score and that makes Scotland to win and both teams to score at an attractive 19/5 with William Hill a real player.
This World Cup match between Scotland and Israel will be played on Oct 9, 2021 and kick off at 17:00. Check below for our tipsters best Scotland vs Israel prediction. You may also visit our dedicated betting previews section for the most up to date previews.