Bill Esdaile’s Top Weekend Racing Tips

STARVED of competitive football for two-and-a-half years, Poland will be chomping at the bit and they can get the Euro 2012 party started with a win against Greece in Warsaw tonight, at 21/20 with BetVictor.

They come into the fixture with three wins in the bag from their warm-up games against Latvia, Slovakia and Andorra and although they may not be the mightiest collection of opponents, Poland have lost just once in 12 outings.

Greece did well in qualifying, finishing top of a section which also included Croatia, but they are an ordinary side that the Poles should beat in front of their own fans.

The opening day of competition continues with Russia against Czech Republic this evening. Like Poland, Russia are expected to win and I’m happy to side with the favourites again, at 6/5 with William Hill.

They boast a renowned manager in Dick Advocaat, who led Netherlands to the semis in 2004, and he looks to be getting the best out of his troops after they beat Italy 3-0 a couple of weeks ago.

After a weekend of fantastic-looking matches, where Germany v Portugal and Spain v Italy will vie for top billing, France play England on Monday.

It is a game neither team can afford to lose, but I see it ending in disappointment for England.

Due to the nature of the game, the draw comes into consideration at 11/5, but France at 6/4 is a decent bet.

They are on a 21-game unbeaten run and looked convincing putting four unanswered goals past Estonia on Tuesday.

You certainly cannot say the same for Roy Hodgson’s men after two lifeless victories against Norway and Belgium.

Les Blues deservedly beat England 2-1 in their last meeting, at Wembley in November 2010. That was their fourth win in five contests in this fixture.