With the 2018 World Cup Betting action getting underway on Thursday with a lone match before a trio of matches then gets underway on Friday, now is a perfect time to take preview what soccer betting enthusiasts across the globe can expect on Day 1 and 2. This breakdown on the first four matches of the 2018 World Cup is highlighted by the huge showdown between two legitimate Cup title hopefuls, according to MyBookie Sportsbook latest odds, when Spain and Portugal square off on Friday.
2018 World Cup Betting Preview Matchday 1 – June 14th & 15th
Russia vs. Saudi Arabia
- When: Thursday, June 14, 11:00 AM ET
- TV: FOX
Russia is the lowest-ranked team in the 2018 World Cup, but they’ll have a chance to beat a Saudi Arabia team that is ranked just three places higher than they are.
Russia has well-known problems scoring with just two goals in this year’s four friendlies and they’ll need 28-year-old Krasnodar striker Fedor Smolov to find the back of the net in the worst way this World Cup after he put 52 on the board the last three years.
Saudi Arabia needs Osama Hawsawi and his 135 caps of international experience to lead the way. Just know that Russia is winless in its last five games at the World Cup with two draws and three losses.
Egypt vs. Uruguay
- When: Friday, June 15, 8:00 AM ET
- TV: Fox
Superstar Mohamed Salah may or may not take the pitch for Egypt in their World Cup opener against Uruguay in Yekaterinburg on Friday and that news has overshadowed the World Cup appearance of Uruguay superstar Luis Suarez.
“I want there to be the possibility of this being my World Cup, after having left in the way I did in 2014,” Salah said in a recent radio interview.
For Suarez, he will look to redeem himself after he bit Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini in the closing stage of Uruguay’s last group game in Brazil four years ago and was handed a record nine-match ban from competitive internationals. Expect this match to be one of the best and most openers in the entire 2018 World Cup.
Morocco vs. Iran
- When: Friday, June 15, 11:00 AM ET
- TV: Fox
Iran is the top team from Asia and will make consecutive World Cup appearances for the first time under Portuguese coach Carlos Queiroz, who took them to Brazil four years ago. Unfortunately, they’ve got off the pitch drama like the fact that Nike has refused to supply shoes to his players due to the U.S. sanctions against Iran.
Juventus center-back Mehdi Benatia led Morocco in qualifying play as they never gave up a goal and recorded four wins and a draw in their last five matches. Morocco is the easy pick in this one people!
Portugal vs. Spain
- When: Friday, June 15, 2:00 PM ET
- TV: Fox:
Oh, this opener is going to be an all-out brawl for it all – but there’s some serious late drama surrounding this affair.
Spain is unbeaten in 20 games and Portugal has lost one competitive match since September 2014.
However, this past Wednesday Spain fired coach Julen Lopetegui and replaced him with Fernando Hierro, whose only previous senior coaching experience was at the second-tier Spanish club, Oviedo.
Lopetegui, who just last month extended his contract as Spain coach, agreed on Tuesday to take over at Real Madrid next season — but the Spanish federation (RFEF) was not pleased in the manner they found out and axed their coach. Still, when Real Madrid teammates Sergio Ramos of Spain and Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo square off, this one should be a thriller.
“We are the national team, we represent a badge, colors, a fanbase and a country,” Ramos said trying to quell the noise surrounding his coach’s firing. “Our responsibility and commitment are with you as well as for you. Yesterday, today and tomorrow together.”
I’m going with Spain everyone and you should too, especially since I’m thinking they’re going to be one of the final four teams standing this year!