World Cup 2014 Part 1

With the World Cup being held in a timezone behind that of the UK and Royal Ascot approaching I decided to do something a bit different for the World Cup. Instead of lumping on a load of odds-on shots or taking on the ‘black’ African nations as I did last time, I’m going to use the average UK weekly take home wage of £403.36 and see where I end up.

I won’t be doing write-ups on every match, due to the fact I want to enjoy the sunshine and alcohol that the month of June usually brings. Therefore the lions share of my ‘bank’ will be place on ante-post bets, whilst anything I do game to game will be posted on twitter.

[symple_heading type=”h2″ title=”Group A” margin_top=”20px;” margin_bottom=”20px” text_align=”left”]

This Group is all about Brazil, with home advantage they get the added pressure. However I expect them to deal with it, they may not steamroller teams, but they can get the job done. That leaves 2nd place up for grabs, I think that’s between Mexico and Croatia. I simply don’t think that Cameroon are good enough and the recent infighting over wages wouldn’t have helped their cause.

I think that Mexico will beat Cameroon in their first group game, whilst Croatia will lose to Brazil. That leaves the pressure on both Cameroon and Croatia in the 2nd round of games, as the loser will be going home, a draw would keep them both alive.. so I think we can expect a cagey game.

Depending on how that game between Cameroon and Croatia goes will leave Mexico, assuming they lose to Brazil, in a very good position entering the last set of games. The winner of Mexico v Croatia is the most likely side to follow Brazil through the the Last 16. I also believe that a draw in their final group match will be enough to see Mexico qualify as I expect them to outscore Croatia over the course of three games.

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Back Mexico To Qualify at 2.50 – Betfair Sportsbook
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[symple_heading type=”h2″ title=”Group B” margin_top=”20px;” margin_bottom=”20px” text_align=”left”]

This is the group where we find the side I think will win the World Cup this year. Spain for me are still the best side on the planet, they have the best squad of players and a style of football that will make any humidity difficult for the team without the ball for 70% of the match. My main problem with Spain in the past was their inability to turn possession into chances, however I feel that this side are more equipped to create a take chances.

The hipster fanwank brigade will tell you that Germany are this great side because they got the the final of Euro 2008, the semi final of the 2010 World Cup and the Euro 2012 semi-final. They also got two club sides in the 2013 Champions League Final. What these bearded Johnny come lately Hoxton types forget to mention in their argument is this;

  • Euro 2008 winners – Spain
  • World Cup 2010 winners – Spain
  • Euro 2012 winners – Spain
  • 2014 Champions League winners – Real Madrid (Spanish club)
  • 2014 Champions League runners-up – Atletico Madrid (Spainish club)
  • 2014 Europa League winners – Sevilla (Spanish club)

Spain may not win the World Cup, but the odds of 7.50 (13/2) are ridiculously large for a side who should qualify from their Group without a lot of fuss and have been there and done it. In horse racing terms backing Spain in the World Cup is like backing a proven Group One winner on good ground on it’s first start on soft. It may not get it, but if it’s good enough you’ll get a very good run for your money and you’d certainly get shorter than 13/2 on it. To make things even better Coral are offering money back (up to £25) if Argentina or Brazil go on to lift the Trophy.

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Back Spain to win The World Cup at 7.50 – Coral
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With Spain taking one of the places that leaves Holland and Chile to fight it out. My feeling is that Holland just aren’t good enough, I expect them to be on the back foot in the group after Spain beat them on Friday night. The Dutch have regressed since losing the 2010 World Cup final, they were awful at Euro 2012. They can’t do any worse at this tournament, but I think Chile will get the required result against them in the 3rd round of games. Chile are an improving side who are better than Holland, no point in making it complicated… take on The Dutch to qualify, I do think they’ll be able to finish above Australia though.

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Back Holland To Finish 3rd at 3.10 – Ladbrokes
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[symple_heading type=”h2″ title=”Group C” margin_top=”20px;” margin_bottom=”20px” text_align=”left”]

Anyone who follows me on Twitter will know that I am a fan of Japan. They’re another improving side on the world footballing stage and it’s about time they started to show it. They play attacking football and will just keep going to the end, which is something the lazy lot from the Ivory Coast should think about doing. I fancy them to outscore any side in this group and that will see them win it. Away wins over France and Belgium in the last two years, show that on their day they can compete with one decent side and one very over-hyped nation. They get the best out of Kagawa, with Honda, Kakitani and Ozakaki all in support I’m expecting to see a few long ranged efforts flying into the back of the net. Their goals are what will see them get through this group and in my opinion progress against the goal-shy sides in Group D, before losing out in a quarter-final against either Brazil or Spain.

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Back Japan To Win Group C at 5.50 – Betfred
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Back Japan To Qualify from Group C at 2.20 – Bet Victor
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Back Japan Stage of Elimination Quarter Finals at 9.50 – Betfred
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[symple_heading type=”h2″ title=”Group D” margin_top=”20px;” margin_bottom=”20px” text_align=”left”]

This is the most boring group in my opinion. We have four side who on the face of it look like they can score goals, but when you dig a little deeper you can see that they play some of the most boring and negative football around. All of that is good news for England though. The media in this country have spend years over-hyping us and now we’re being under-hyped, they seem to have ignored that fact that Italy and Uruguay aren’t actually that great. I’m expecting a 1-0 victory over Italy before we play a Uruguay in a match that will see both teams parking the bus, seeing as a point will put them both in good shape for the final round of fixtures. With England facing a Costa Rica side that will struggle to score in this years tournament, we may be adventurous and score two goals against them. That will leave us on 7 points and assure us victory in the Group as I think Italy will be able to keep Suarez quiet before they find their solitary goal on the counter attack. It may not work out like that, but in all seriousness there is nothing between the top three sides in this group which makes England the ‘value’ call.

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Back England To Win Group D at 3.20 – Bet365
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My NAP of the tournament also comes in this group. As you can see from above I’m not very hopefully of seeing free-flowing attacking football, there for I have goals at a premium. I’ve actually got there only being 5 goals score in the six games played, which on reflection may be a bit low… so I’ve played it safe and doubled my prediction to 10. However 1o is still lower than the total group goals line of 14.5 offered by Bwin. I will be surprised if any game in this group goes over 2.50 goals, so I have unders as my safest and best bet.

[symple_box color=”green” text_align=”center” width=”100%” float=”none”]
Back Under 14.5 Goals in Group D at 2.02 – Bwin
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Staking for the above is as below:

  • Mexico To Qualify £20
  • Holland 3rd Place £20
  • Spain World Cup Winners £25
  • Japan Group C Winners £20
  • Japan To Qualify £30
  • Japan Quarter Final Elimination £15
  • England Group D Winners £20
  • Group D Total Goals £50

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