I agree with you the Saturday will not be easy. I'm sure Israel will be looking for a result, and will be as cagy as possible in shutting England down. But, I still think its the easier of the two fixtures.
On your second point, this is a bit disturbing. If McClaren is willing to risk Stevie, or anyone else (Hargreives is also doubtful right now) to save his own job, then he should no longer be the England Coach (although that's just one reason among many to bag this guy). Sure we want results, but any coach who does not put his players first, will loose the respect of those players. Once that's happened, you are no longer effective. This is about what is best for English Football, not Steve McClaren.