On November 21, the greatest competition in the world, the World Cup, will get under way. Qatar has the honour of being the host country and the competition will come to a close on the 18th of December. Thirty-two teams will battle it out to lay their hands on the most coveted sports trophy on the planet.
The first game of the tournament will take place between Senegal and the Netherlands at the Al Thumama Stadium. Next, the hosts will take on Ecuador at the Al Bayt Stadium. Anyone could win the tournament. Below is a look at some of the favourites and also at some of the different types of bets you can place on the World Cup if you fancy a flutter.
Brazil hasn’t lifted the trophy since 2002, but only a fool would rule out this famous footballing nation as a potential winner. Remember, this country is obsessed with football like no other. They command World Cup odds of 9/2 to bring the trophy home from Qatar.
Brazil has won the title five times and has strength and depth in the squad. Then there are players such as Neymar, Alisson and Vinicius Junior who the international side can call up for duty. Such players can really drive the team and raise the morale not just of the team itself, but of the nation.
France is the defending champions and has odds of 11/2 to win the trophy. They have a star-studded side that includes Kylian Mbappe and Paul Pogba. They know what it takes to mount a serious challenge and come out on top. Didier Deschamps’’s squad could go all the way again in Qatar.
Gareth Southgate’s boys made it to the semi-final in 2018, then to the final of the Euros in 2020. Just like France, they’ve received odds of 11/2. After so many years without winning glory, the Three Lions are hungry, and maybe that hunger could carry them all the way in Qatar.
Spain has odds of 8/1. It’s been more than 10 years since the Spaniards brought a trophy back to the Mediterranean. The Spanish squad is young and exciting and could really surprise the world in Qatar. Definitely, a team to watch.
Argentina is another squad you can never count out. Sportsbooks have awarded them world cup odds of 9/1. The World Cup has evaded Lionel Messi, one of the world’s finest players, for some time now. This could finally be the tournament he lays his hands on the trophy.
Betting on the World Cup
Of course, the World Cup is also an immense occasion to indulge in a little sports betting and add even more excitement to your experience of the tournament. Below are some of the different types of bets you might wish to place on the tournament:
This is one of the most straightforward bets you can place. Choose the team you think will win before the start of the tournament and then you can enjoy following them throughout. Hopefully, they’ll go on to lift the trophy for you. Although following a team to the end is exciting, you may get more value and control from betting on your team to win individual matches.
Another enjoyable bet to place is on who will win the group stages or on who will advance to the knockout stages (the teams that finish in the top two move on to the knockout phase of the tournament). Like betting on an outright winner, you may find more value and control in betting on individual matches that will determine the outcome of the group.
Goals over or under
In this type of bet, the sportsbooks set a total number of goals that will be scored during a game, and you bet either that the number will be higher or lower than the sportsbook has predicted. Totals can be whole numbers or half ones. Half numbers are more popular, however, because they remove the chance of a draw or a refunded bet.
Bets on players
If you have a favourite player or players and they’re going to be taking part in the tournament, you can wager on their performance. This could be overall or on their performance in individual matches. For instance, you might wish to bet on the number of goals they score in a match or in the whole tournament.
Betting on players is risky, though, because there’s no way of knowing how the tournament will go. Unless you’re experienced in betting on soccer, you may choose to avoid this type of bet.
The biggest tournament on the planet may seem far away, but time will fly by and soon it will be here. Will France defend their title? Will one of the other favourites bring home the trophy? Will a country completely unexpected be crowned champions? The world will find out soon enough.