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Will Beckham get marching orders again?

Will David Beckham be sent off in England&#39s all-important Group F game against Argentina? The latest odds from William Hill have him at 33-1.

William Hill also maintains Argentina as favourite to lift the trophy at 4-1, marginally ahead of France at 9-2 and then Italy at 5-1. England are sixth favourites, behind Spain and Brazil, with odds of 9-1.

The bookies, however, give scant regard for the host nations. Despite convincing evidence that the tournament throughout its history has favoured the homes sides – Spain is the exception here but isn&#39t Spain always the exception in international football? – Japan is given an 80-1 chance of winning and South Korea is even further away on 125-1. And South Korea actually has another advantage. As a condition of taking the job of national coach, Guus Hiddink demanded permanent access to 80 per cent of the players in the domestic K-League. No other national coach gets nearly as much access to their players as this.

Hiddink&#39s main task appears to be in persuading his side to play a more offensive game. He says: “Korea is afraid of going forward and has to overcome that. It is a mentality that needs to be changed. History will show you that the country has not won a single match in four World Cups.”

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