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June 9, 2014

World Cup Preview

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Sean and Ryan welcome on real life brit and our very own soccer expert Billi (@billibhatti) to preview the World Cup. The guys breakdown each group providing picks and betting strategies for futures, props and game bets. All odds courtesy of Bovada.lv

 

GROUP A

Brazil is chasing their 6th world cup title and has the home field edge to do it in 2014. The rest of the group lacks any sort of real contender. The favorite to advance is Croatia who has top talent from the top leagues in Europe. Mexico has changed managers 4 times during the qualifying process and has serious problems. Cameroon will struggle to get a point in 3 matches. Oh and who ever they are will likely play Spain in the round of 16. Good Luck

ODDS

Team(FIFA rank)     
Win World Cup     
Win Group
Brazil(4) +300 -500
Croatia(20) +15000 +800
Mexico(19) +12500 +900
Cameroon(50) +50000 +2500

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MATCH SCHEDULE

  • Thursday, June 12: Brazil vs. Croatia (Sao Paulo), 1 p.m.
  • Friday, June 13: Mexico vs. Cameroon (Natal), 9 a.m.
  • Tuesday, June 17: Brazil vs. Mexico (Belo Horizonte) 12 p.m.
  • Wednesday, June 18: Cameroon vs. Croatia (Manaus), 3 p.m.
  • Monday, June 23: Cameroon vs. Brazil (Brasilia), 1 p.m.
  • Monday, June 23: Croatia vs. Mexico (Recife), 1 p.m.

all times US Pacific

PREDICTION

  1. Brazil
  2. Croatia
  3. Mexico
  4. Cameroon

GROUP B

Spain haven’t lost a major international tournament in 6 years and would be shocked if they didn’t win the group. The Netherlands is not as good as they are getting credit for. Chile is a physical team who is better than people think and could be aided by the crowd on South American soil. Australia has no shot and is probably a lock for 0 points.

ODDS

Team(FIFA rank)     
Win World Cup     
Win Group
Spain(1) +300 -150
Netherlands(15) +2500 +300
Chile(13) +4000 +375
Australia(59) +50000 +6600

Sign up for our ESPN World Cup Bracket Challenge

MATCH SCHEDULE

  • Friday, June 13: Spain vs. Netherlands (Salvador), 12 p.m.
  • Friday, June 13: Chile vs. Australia (Cuiaba), 3 p.m.
  • Wednesday, June 18: Australia vs. Netherlands (Porto Alegre), 9 a.m.
  • Wednesday, June 18: Spain vs. Chile (Rio De Janeiro), 12 p.m.
  • Monday, June 23: Netherlands vs. Chile (Sao Paulo), 9 a.m.
  • Monday, June 23: Australia vs. Spain (Curitiba), 9 a.m.

all times US Pacific

PREDICTION

  1. Spain
  2. Chile
  3. Netherlands
  4. Australia

GROUP C

We always hear about the group of death, well by that logic this is the group of poop 1a(there may be 2). Colombia’s Radamel Falcao is a major question mark as he rehabs from knee surgery. Ivory Coast probably holds the most raw talent in the group but can they over come the African curse of team chemistry.

Greece and their defense will keep them in every game and Japan, Ill be honest I just don’t see them threatening. Regardless no one in this group will be in the round of 8.

ODDS

Team(FIFA rank)     
Win World Cup     
Win Group
Colombia(5) +3300 -105
Greece(10) +20000 +700
Ivory Coast(21) +12500 +300
Japan(47) +15000 +400

Sign up for our ESPN World Cup Bracket Challenge

MATCH SCHEDULE

  • Saturday June 14: Colombia vs. Greece (Belo Horizonte), 9 a.m.
  • Saturday June 14: Côte d’Ivoire vs. Japan (Recife), 6 p.m.
  • Thursday June 19: Colombia vs. Côte d’Ivoire (Brasilia), 9 a.m.
  • Thursday June 19: Japan vs. Greece (Natal), 3 p.m.
  • Tuesday June 24: Japan vs Colombia (Cuiaba), 1 p.m.
  • Tuesday June 24: Greece vs. Côte d’Ivoire (Fortaleza), 1 p.m.

all times US Pacific

PREDICTION

  1. Ivory Coast
  2. Colombia
  3. Greece
  4. Japan

GROUP D

So lets just call this group of death 1a as this is one of the 2 toughest groups. Eight countries have won the world cup, three are in this group. The lock here is that Costa Rica finishes last. Uruguay is a sexy dark horse pick to win the tourney and why not they did reach the semi finals last year and boast one of the top goal scorers in the world in Luis Suarez.

Italy has been all over the place and could top the group or fail to advance. Meanwhile England is almost coming in under the radar and could very well surprise by topping the group.

ODDS

Team(FIFA rank)     
Win World Cup     
Win Group
Italy(9) +2200 +160
Uruguay(6) +2500 +180
England(11) +2200 +225
Costa Rica(32) +100000 +5000

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MATCH SCHEDULE

  • Saturday June 14: Uruguay vs. Costa Rica (Fortaleza), 12 p.m.
  • Saturday June 14: England vs. Italy (Manaus), 3 p.m.
  • Thursday June 19: Uruguay vs. England (Sao Paulo), 12 p.m.
  • Friday June 20: Italy vs. Costa Rica (Recife), 9 a.m.
  • Tuesday June 24 : Italy vs. Uruguay (Natal), 9 a.m.
  • Tuesday June 24: Costa Rica vs. England (Belo Horizonte), 9 a.m.

all times US Pacific

PREDICTION

  1. Uruguay
  2. England
  3. Italy
  4. Costa Rica

GROUP E

Group of poop 1b. France just lost their best player in Ribery and yet they are still the favorite to win the group and a favorable match-up vs the 2nd place team in Group F. Switzerland and Ecuador will most likely be fighting for the right to face Argentina in the round of 16. Don’t sleep on Honduras as they bring their scrappiness from CONCACAF, ok you can sleep on them they have no chance.

ODDS

Team(FIFA rank)     
Win World Cup     
Win Group
France(16) +2500 -125
Switzerland(8) +12500 +250
Ecuador(28) +15000 +400
Honduras(30) +150000 +2800

Sign up for our ESPN World Cup Bracket Challenge

MATCH SCHEDULE

  • Sunday June 15: Switzerland vs. Ecuador (Brasilia), 9 a.m.
  • Sunday June 15: France vs. Honduras (Porto Allegre), 12 p.m.
  • Friday June 20: Switzerland vs. France (Salvador), 12 p.m.
  • Friday June 20: Honduras vs. Ecuador (Curitiba), 3 p.m.
  • Wednesday June 25: Honduras vs. Switzerland (Manaus), 1 p.m.
  • Wednesday June 25: Ecuador vs. France (Rio de Janeiro), 1 p.m.

all times US Pacific

PREDICTION

  1. France
  2. Switzerland
  3. Ecuador
  4. Honduras

GROUP F

Sooooo Argentina have been set up very nicely to walk through the group stage. Bosnia-Herzgovina has a talent and is probably the most like to grab the #2 spot in Group F and a date with France in the round of 16. Nigeria is my dark horse as they are young but play defense and have creative players up top. Sorry Iran 1 point would be surprising in this group.

ODDS

Team(FIFA rank)     
Win World Cup     
Win Group
Argentina(7) +400 -500
Bosnia and Herzgovina(25) +15000 +600
Nigeria(44) +25000 +1000
Iran(37) +150000 +4000

Sign up for our ESPN World Cup Bracket Challenge

MATCH SCHEDULE

  • Sunday June 15: Argentina vs. Bosnia and Herzegovina (Rio De Janeiro), 3 p.m.
  • Monday June 16: Iran vs. Nigeria (Curitiba), 12 p.m.
  • Saturday June 21: Argentina vs. Iran (Belo Horizonte), 9 a.m.
  • Saturday June 21: Nigeria vs. Bosnia and Herzegovina (Cuiaba), 6 p.m.
  • Wednesday June 25: Nigeria vs. Argentina (Porto Allegre), 9 a.m.
  • Wednesday June 25: Bosnia and Herzegovina vs. Iran (Salvador) 9 a.m.

all times US Pacific

PREDICTION

  1. Argentina
  2. Nigeria
  3. Bosnia and Herzgovina
  4. Iran

GROUP G

Group of death 1b. Germany is big, fast and strong, simply loaded. Hard to not see them topping the group. With Portugal there are questions around Ronaldo’s health and that is a concern as Portugal has shown that sans the FIFA player of the year they are very beatable. Enter a new look United States team who is arguably is the most talented team they have ever fielded.

If the Americans can shock the world and advance to the round of 16 they will most likely be facing a familiar foe in Belgium who they are playing in a closed door match on June 12th.  Ghana will look to renew its dominance over the United States, unfortunately they also boast the youngest team in the tourney which is a bad recipe when having to face Germany, Ronaldo and a very good counter attacking United States side.

ODDS

Team(FIFA rank)     
Win World Cup     
Win Group
Germany(2) +550 -150
Portugal(3) +2500 +250
Ghana(38) +20000 +900
United States(14) +10000 +900

Sign up for our ESPN World Cup Bracket Challenge

MATCH SCHEDULE

  • Monday, June 16: Germany vs. Portugal (Salvador), 9 a.m.
  • Monday, June 16: Ghana vs. United States (Natal), 3 p.m.
  • Saturday, June 21: Germany vs. Ghana (Fortaleza), 12 p.m.
  • Sunday, June 22: United States vs. Portugal (Manaus), 3 p.m.
  • Thursday, June 26: Portugal vs. Ghana (Brasilia), 9 a.m.
  • Thursday, June 26: United States vs. Germany, 9 a.m.

all times US Pacific

PREDICTION

  1. German
  2. United States
  3. Portugal
  4. Ghana

GROUP H

Belgium is another popular sleeper pick to take home the trophy in 2014 and feels to me like a lock to take the top spot in group H. South Korea is coming off a Bronze medal in the 2012 Olympics and sports a talented squad looking to advance to the round of 16.

Russia is favored to take the 2nd spot and unless the suffer from the lapses that have derailed previous world cups they could be over taken by Korea Republic. Algeria might be the best long shot to win a group, but still a long shot.

ODDS

Team(FIFA rank)     
Win World Cup     
Win Group
Belgium(12) +1800 -175
Russia(38) +10000 +240
Korea Republic(14) +30000 +700
Algeria(3) +100000 +2200

Sign up for our ESPN World Cup Bracket Challenge

MATCH SCHEDULE

  • Tuesday, June 17: Belgium vs. Algeria (Belo Horizonte), 9 a.m.
  • Tuesday, June 17: Russia vs. Korea Republic (Cuiaba), 3 p.m.
  • Sunday, June 22: Belgium vs. Russia (Rio de Janeiro), 9 a.m.
  • Sunday, June 22: Korea Republic vs. Algeria (Porto Allegre), 12 p.m.
  • Thursday, June 26: Korea Republic vs. Belgium (Sao Paulo), 1 p.m.
  • Thursday, June 26: Algeria vs. Russia (Curitiba), 1 p.m.

all times US Pacific

PREDICTION

  1. Belgium
  2. Russia
  3. Korea Republic
  4. Algeria


Ryan Kramer and Sean Green are writers and co-hosts for the Sports Gambling Podcast. Follow the show on twitter @GamblingPodcast.

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