When things are going your way in sportsbetting, you can do no wrong and everything seems to come off.
This week was not one of those times.
Our Week 2 bets got off to the worst start when our choice of Belgium scorers couldn’t find the back of the net against Algeria. The dark horses did manage to beat the useful Algerians 2-1, with goals from Marouane Fellaini (so poor for Manchester United this season) and Dries Mertens, and they followed that up this week by beating Russia 1-0. It will be interesting to see how far Belgium can go now that they are in the 2nd round, but a lack of a lethal striker could prove their undoing.
Our tip to lay France against Switzerland was a long-term shot, and the France duly despatched to so-called dark horses 5-2. Argentina were also reliant on a touch of magic from Lionel Messi in extra time to beat the resolute Iran 1-0, scuppering our over 2.5 goals bet.
Meanwhile, betting on England proved another damp squib, with the Three Lions being beaten 2-1 by Uruguay and a masterclass by Luis Suarez. England are now going home with one game to go, having been knocked out at the group stage for the first time since the 1958 World Cup. Also going home are the newcomers from Bosnia-Hercogovina after losing to Nigeria in their second group game. The Bosnians were desperately disappointing overall and our outright each-way on Edin Dzeko as top scorer is dead in the water.
There was one glimmer of light in our week’s bets, with the Hondurans going to form by picking up the first yellow card in the game after just 12 minutes. Just like clockwork…
As we go into the last 1st round games, it’s all to play for in the race to qualify for the 2nd round, with some groups hanging in the balance.
Our Week 3 World Cup Bets
Greece v Ivory Coast
Tuesday 24 June
Ivory Coast Win
5pts @ 21/20 (BetVictor)
The math is simple: if the Ivory Coast win or draw their last game against Greece they qualify. Colombia, meanwhile, (barring some goal-fest from the Africans) have already won their group and will play the runners-up from Group D.
The Ivory Coast were rocked this week following the death of Yaya and Kolo Toure’s younger brother and have decided to stay in Brazil to help their team. Greece have been poor overall and we are backing the Elephants to get the points they need.
Costa Rica v England
Tuesday 24 June
Costa Rica Win
2pts @ 7/2 (BetVictor)
England have been desperately disappointing in Brazil, going out of the group stage for the first time since the 1958 World Cup. Despite some promising young players, England has lacked a cutting edge and has been naive in defence, particularly in the Uruguay game when Liverpool’s Luis Suarez (apparently only 80 percent fit) tore them a new asshole.
Manager Roy Hodgson has pledged to rest captain Steven Gerrard, who will surely now retire from England duty, and give some of the bit-part players a chance to show what they can do. That could help release the shackles and give England a lot more freedom to express themselves, but Costa Rica have proved they are no mugs, and the value bet is the CONCACAF team to get three more points and secure their place in the 2nd round.
Honduras v Switzerland
Wednesday 25 June
Honduras First Team Booking
10pts @ 4/7
Our biggest bet yet is on Honduras to pick up the first yellow card in their final group game against the Swiss. As seen in their final warm-up game against England and their first group games of the tournament, the Hondurans are a physical side and like to get stuck in from kick-off. Honduras have played 2, lost 2, and have nothing to lose, so picking up suspensions will mean nothing.
World Cup Outright Bets Progress So Far…
Lowest Scoring Group: Group D (Pending)
Highest Scoring Group: Group F (Pending)
Golden Boot: Edin Dzeko Each-Way (Lost)
Golden Boot: Gonzalo Higuain Each-Way (Pending)
Chile to Win World Cup (Pending)
England to Reach Quarter-Finals (Lost)
Argentina to Win World Cup (Pending)
England Top Scorer: Raheem Sterling (Pending)
Netherlands to Win Group B (Pending)