As we are in the midst of an international break from the regular club football season, what better time to take a look ahead to the World Cup, which will be taking place in Russia later this summer. The first kick of a ball will happen in the match between hosts Russia and Saudi Arabia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on 14th June and 32 of the world’s best international sides will be looking to create their path all the way to the World Cup final at the very same stadium on 15th July.
There are of course plenty of teams vying for a place in that final, as they will all be dreaming of lifting the famous gold trophy. The current friendly internationals are giving us a bit of an idea on who might have a good chance, but things will be taken into an extra gear when the competitive fixtures start.
There is the possibility of money being made from the World Cup too. As an average punter, you may decide to place a bet on the outright winner of the tournament, and to help you out with that we will list the current odds for some of the leading sides during the discussion below.
Alternatively, if you are a matched bettor you could use the help of top matched betting sites such as Matched Bets, Odds Monkey, Profit Squad or Profit Accumulator to find the best bookmaker offers to make advantage of. Matched betting is of course a way of making an expected profit from free bets and bonuses offered by bookmakers. I will discuss matched betting in much more detail later in this article, and will take a look at some specific offers that could be listed for the World Cup this summer.
For now though, let’s see which of the world’s top international sides are fancied by the bookmakers to go all the way in Russia.
Current World Cup Betting Odds
Germany – Best Odds 5/1
It has been speculated that this may be Joachim Low’s last tournament as manager of the German national team, and if he is to depart he will be expecting to take another trophy with him. Germany of course are the defending world champions having achieved an amazing success in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, which included a 7-1 trashing of the hosts in the semi final.
The champions will face a tough task to defend their title though, which will start in the group stages. They have been drawn in Group F, along with three sides that will be seen as banana skins; Mexico, Sweden and South Korea.
Brazil – Best Odds 5/1
As mentioned, their World Cup on home soil in 2014 ended in disaster and embarrassment. A lot of that capitulation was put down to the back injury that star player Neymar suffered, which put him out of the semi final. There are similar worries this time as the PSG man is out with an ankle injury at the moment, though he is likely to recover in time.
The Green and Yellow’s actually enjoyed success at the Luzhniki Stadium recently, with a 3-0 friendly win against Russia. The Group stage offers the challenge of Switzerland, Costa Rica and Serbia, which they should come through unscathed.
France – Best Odds 13/2
France suffered a similar deflating feeling as a losing host in the Euro 2016 final which they’ll be looking to put right this summer. There is so much talent in the squad, with the star man likely to be Atletico Madrid’s Antoine Griezmann.
The French side are not having the best warm up for the tournament though, losing at home to Colombia in friendly action recently. They will need to be a lot better if they wish to beat Australia, Peru and Denmark in Group C.
Spain – Best Odds 8/1
Spain have had a mixed time of things in recent World Cups. They finally won their first ever world title in 2010 when they were at their peak, but then completely fell apart in 2014, crashing out in the group stages after a 5-1 defeat to the Netherlands and a 2-0 defeat to Chile.
La Roja have a very interesting group to contend with this time around, as near neighbours and European Champions Portugal will pose a big test, as well as the wildcards of Morocco and Iran. There is no reason why Spain can’t go all the way, so 8/1 is decent value.
Argentina – Best Odds 9/1
Any team that has Lionel Messi in it always has a decent chance. Argentina are far from just a one man team though, as they have so much world class talent in their ranks. This includes Sergio Aguero, Angel Di Maria and Gonzalo Higuain.
You’ll probably notice that those are all attacking players, and it is the goalkeepers and defenders that may let them down in Russia. They have a really tough group too, with challenges coming in the form of Iceland, Croatia and Nigeria.
Belgium – Best Odds 12/1
Speaking of sides with plenty of talent, Belgium have an embarrassment of riches in certain areas of the pitch. Players such as Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku, Jan Vertonghen, Toby Alderweireld and Thibaut Courtois would fit in any side in the world.
They face a very intriguing Group G clash with England, plus matches against Panama and Tunisia. It’s time for the Belgian Golden Generation to deliver.
England – Best Odds 18/1
Gareth Southgate has quietly got his England side functioning pretty well as a unit. A formation change to 3 at the back was a bit jarring at first as it’s not what England fans are used to, but it seems to have worked so far as the clean sheets are racking up.
On paper this looks like one of England’s worst squads in quite some time when compared to some of the great players they had in the past. A youthful squad with a lack of big names strangely could be what sees success though.
Sides such as Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal (28/1) and Luis Suarez’s Uruguay (33/1) will pose threats too, as well as some interesting looking outsiders like Croatia (40/1) or Colombia (40/1).
Matched Betting On The World Cup
So far throughout the normal football season, there have been some excellent offers listed by certain bookmakers. A lot of these offers could be used to make an expected cash profit thanks to matched betting techniques.
With the World Cup coming up in June and July, a lot of these offers are likely to be listed for a number of the matches in this tournament too. With the help of top matched betting sites you could be making money in no time.
If you are unfamiliar with the process of matched betting, it involves placing a back bet on a selection to win with a bookmaker and a lay bet on the same selection not to win with a betting exchange.
For example, if a bookie was to offer you a £10 free bet when you sign up for an account and place your first real money bet, you could make a profit thanks to matched betting. By placing a back bet and a lay bet, you will cover all potential outcomes for the event and this will allow you to qualify for the free bet.
Then, once the £10 free bet has been credited to you, you can repeat the same back and lay strategy this time using the free bet stake in order to make an expected profit. When getting started with matched betting, we would recommend a subscription for a matched betting site.
On these matched betting sites, you may be able to find some great offers for the World Cup once the action starts. Here are some of the top football offers recently listed that may make an appearance when the tournament comes around:
- 2Up You Win: Listed by bet365 and Paddy Power among others for selected leagues and competitions, the bookie will pay out early if your team goes 2 goals up at any point during the match. This offer provides you with the rare chance of winning your back bet and your lay bet for a potential big win, if your team throws away a 2 goal lead to either lose or draw.
- Bore Draw Refund: With this type of offer, there is no way of ensuring a profit, but you can give yourself a chance of a free bet by backing and laying a selection for a low qualifying loss. If the match then ends 0-0, you will get your stake back as a free bet which can be used to make a profit.
- Bet and Get: Many bet and get style offers are listed for big sporting events, and there is no event bigger than the World Cup. An example of this kind of offer could be that if you place a bet on one match, the bookie would give you a free bet to use on another match.
Matched betting provides you with some great potential money making opportunities, both in the short term and long term.