2018 World Cup Betting Preview: Day 8
The 2018 World Cup Betting action carries on with three more intriguing matchups on Thursday, including the second game for a pair of pre-tournament favorites France and Argentina. Let’s take a closer look at the three games on top for Thursday.
2018 World Cup Betting Preview: Day 8
— French Team (@FrenchTeam) 20 de junio de 2018
Australia vs. Denmark
- Time: 4:00 p.m. (Local)
- Where: Samara Arena, Samara
- 2018 World Cup Betting Odds: Denmark -108 / Australia +341 / Draw +234
Coming off a 1-0 win over Peru in their opener, the Danes are now -110 favorites to beat Australia. The Socceroos, on the other hand, are +347 to pull the upset, with a draw between the two teams listed at +238.
Despite getting the win and three valuable points in their opener, Denmark wasn’t overly impressive. They allowed Peru to take 17 shots, requiring six excellent saves from keeper Kasper Schmeichel and one missed penalty by the South Americans to secure the win.
They were also a little inconsistent on the attack aside from one moment of brilliance from Christian Eriksen who fed Yussuf Poulsen for the team’s only goal. Against Australia, they’ll face a team that should remain organized defensively and could be difficult to break down.
The Aussies, of course, need at least a draw to keep their hopes alive after a disappointing loss to France in their opener. Australia was a little unlikely not to earn at least a draw against the French. That being said, they rarely looked threatening on the attack despite keeping 49% of the possession.
Against Denmark, the Australians need to do better to create scoring chances, and so they may have to call upon aging striker Tim Cahill to provide a spark.
France vs. Peru
- Time: 8:00 p.m. (Local)
- Where: Ekaterinburg Arena, Ekaterinburg
- 2018 World Cup Betting Odds: France -177 / Peru +528 / Draw +302
Despite an unconvincing performance in their opener, France has three points and are -186 favorites to topple Peru in their second game. The Peruvians, on the other hand, are sizable underdogs at +554. Of course, a draw, listed at +309, would be enough to keep Peru in contention heading into their final group game.
For all of their talent, Les Bleus didn’t look like tournament favorites in their first game. It will be interesting to see if head coach Didier Deschamps makes any noteworthy lineup changes for the Peru match to help light a fire under his team.
The French went through the motions against Australia and ended up with three points, but Peru provides a more athletic and attack-minded challenge.
Moreover, Peru is desperate for a point and to prove themselves on the world stage against a superpower like France. Any nerves they had for the Denmark game should be calm by now, so one should expect the Peruvians to come out guns blazing.
That could leave them vulnerable on the counterattack, but it will also put the French under pressure defensively, leading to an open and entertaining game.
Argentina vs. Croatia
- Time: 9:00 p.m. (Local)
- Where: Nizhny Novgorod Stadium, Nizhny Novgorod
- 2018 World Cup Betting Odds: Croatia +293 / Argentina +103 / Draw +233
After one game, Croatia sits all alone atop Group D. However, they face a tough test on Thursday when they play Argentina, who is favored to win at +102. A Croatian win is set at +293, while a draw is also possible at +234.
The Croatians employed a defensive approach in their opening match against Nigeria, a tactic that worked to perfection. Of course, that strategy didn’t create much offensively, despite the squad including several technically brilliant players. Croatia essentially manufactured two goals on an own goal and a penalty kick.
Of course, with three points in the bank, they may be inclined to employ a similar strategy against Argentina in hopes of securing at least a draw.
Meanwhile, the Argentinians will be under a great deal of pressure to beat Croatia after a disappointing draw with Iceland in their opener. Naturally, all eyes will be on Lionel Messi to bounce back after having a penalty kick blocked against Iceland that could have given Argentina the win. However, Messi will likely have a different supporting cast around him.
Argentina coach Jorge Sampaoli has promised major changes to both the lineup and formation, which may be necessary but could also be risky in a game the South American side will feel they need to win.