FIFA World Cup Previews ï¿½ Group G
Group G is the group of death with one of Brazil, Portugal and the Ivory Coast definitely not making progress to the knockout stages. Which side will be going home early? Will North Korea, the fourth side in the group, be able to take any points against these three world class teams? BetRepublic previews the group here.
Outright Group Winner Odds : Soccer Betting Tip
Brazil ï¿½ 4/7
Portugal ï¿½ 10/3
Ivory Coast ï¿½ 7/2
North Korea ï¿½ 80/1
Group Qualification Odds:
Brazil ï¿½ 1/7
Portugal ï¿½ 4/6
Ivory Coast ï¿½ 8/11
North Korea ï¿½ 12/1
These odds were supplied by Betrepublic.
Brazil are the most successful side to feature at the World Cup ï¿½ they have lifted the trophy on five different occasions and are the only side to feature in all previous eighteen World Cup finals. They go into the nineteenth edition of the finals as second favourites at 5/1 behind Spain (4/1) to claim their sixth world crown. Their coach, Dunga, has added a defensive solidarity to the well known attacking flair of Brazil and in their qualifying run they conceded just eleven goals in eighteen matches, whilst being the top scoring side in South America with thirty-three goals.
Brazil have all of the qualities necessary to win this tournament in ability, experience and tactical know how and having just leapfrogged Spain to become the number one side in the world I will be surprised if they do not claim a sixth title. With Brazil being the most likely side to win the group who will follow them into the knockout stages? Will it be number three in the world Portugal or number twenty-seventh Ivory Coast? William Hill believe that it will be Portugal following the Brazilian side into the last sixteen stage of the tournament despite them finishing runners up to Denmark in UEFA Group 1.
The Portuguese side got off to a great start to their campaign by beating Malta 4-0 then lost to Denmark and then followed that up with three 0-0 draws to leave them out the verge of failing to qualify. However they won their last three games, scoring eight goals without conceding, to beat Sweden to second in the group by a point. They reached the finals by beating Bosnia-Herzegovina 1-0 home and away despite missing their talisman, Cristiano Ronaldo for both matches. These finals will be the fifth occasion that Portugal have played in and in the previous four finals they have failed to progress from the group twice and reached the Semi Finals on the other two occasions. Should they progress from this group, and have history repeat itself, then Portugal could be on for a great run in the tournament.
However, Portugal will have to surpass the hurdle of the Ivory Coast, who are undoubtedly the most talented side in African football. Their ranks boast the likes of Chelsea’s Didier Drogba and Salomon Kalou as well as Arsenal’s Emmanuel Eboue and Manchester City star Kolo Toure amongst many players plying their trade at the top levels of European football. This is the second time that the Ivory Coast have qualified for the finals and on both occasions they have had tough qualifying groups. This time they have to get past Brazil and Portugal and on their only other appearance, in Germany four years ago, they were drawn with Argentina, the Netherlands and Serbia and Montenegro. They were beaten by both Argentina and the Netherlands last time around, but with their squad having vastly improved in the four years since Germany they have a great chance of making the knockout stage this time around.
Group G 2010 FIFA World Cup Soccer Betting Tip North Korea are really the forgotten side in this group, with all the attention being focused on who will qualify out of Brazil, Portugal and the Ivory Coast. They faced a gruelling qualification battle that spanned twenty months and sixteen matches, but they managed to finish as runners up behind their more illustrious neighbours, South Korea, in the final qualifying group to book their return to the World Cup for the first time since 1966. The finals in England was the only time before now that North Korea have qualified for a World Cup and they reached the Quarter Finals but were beaten 5-3 by Portugal, despite leading 3-0. Unfortunately for them this time around they have gotten an extremely difficult draw and I cannot see them progressing past the group stages. Who will progress to the last sixteen stage? North Korea will not make it past the group stages in South Africa.
They have gotten the toughest possible draw and they will be lucky to get anything at all from their three matches. This leaves the big three sides to fight it out for the two qualifying places. I feel that Brazil are the most balanced side at the finals and will win the group, and very possibly the tournament outright. In their eighteen qualifying matches they scored three goals for every one they conceded and finished with the most goals scored and least conceded.
So who will follow them through? Will it be Portugal who struggled through their qualifying group, but can be sure that Cristiano Ronaldo will shine on the world’s biggest stage? Or will it be the Ivory Coast with their all round squad strength and expert Premier League marksman Didier Drogba? I feel that the Ivory Coast are a better overall side than Portugal and they will take the second spot in the group. BetRepublic Recommends: Back Brazil to win the group @ 4/7 with the Ivory Coast to qualify @ 8/11.