World Cup’s Big 6 Nations – 1st Match Previews

June 10, 2018 3:00 pm by Ken E

For long-term followers of our Online Casino Canada News, you may recall that a couple of months back, our panel of in-house experts ran the form and player slide rule over all 32 teams to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

For those with the best memories, you’ll recall that our experts chose the 7 teams most likely to lift the World Cup as (in no-particular-order);

  • Brazil
  • Belgium
  • England
  • Spain
  • Argentina
  • Germany
  • France

Little has changed since to alter their opinion.

Best World Cup Sports Betting for Canadians

For your convenience below, you’ll find tables outlining;

• All 6 teams latest odds to lift the World Cup with the three of the main sports betting providers for Canadians (Betway, William Hill and 888 Casino)

• The odds for each country’s first Group games in preview of our Top 6 favourite nations with the same three main sports betting providers for Canadians (Betway, William Hill and 888 Casino).

Remember, other great sportsbooks for Canadians with easily navigated World Cup Betting Markets include PornHub, Spin Palace and Karamba.

Remember, all of our carefully and independently chosen and recommended Sports Books do a magnificent job for Canadians across the full gamut of North American sports too including markets such as NHL, CFL, NFL, MLB, PGA Golf tournaments, NCAA, MLS and NBA.

World Cup Winner Odds

Team Betway William Hill 888 Casino
Belgium 11-1 11-1 11-1
Brazil 9/2 4-1 4-1
England 16-1 16-1 18-1
Spain 6-1 6-1 6-1
Germany 9/2 5-1 9/2
Argentina 9-1 9-1 9-1
France 6-1 11/2 13/2

Portugal vs Spain

Portugal vs Spain - 15 June 2018 - Fisht Olympic Stadium, Sochi, Russia

15 June 2018 – Fisht Olympic Stadium, Sochi, Russia

As strong as Portugal are with Cristiano Ronaldo, the goal scoring wizard and worldwide superstar for his exploits with Real Madrid, Spain are favourites with most pundits and more importantly for this vital match, also with the bookies.

Why are Spain favorites?

Spain waltzed easily through their World Cup qualifying matches, not losing a qualifier (9 wins and 1 draw), only conceding 3 goals along the way and have impressed since in the lead up games.
Belting a side as strong as Argentina 6-1 only a brief time ago in a lead-up match shows evidence of their quality of the Spanish outfit and they have a healthy mix of youth and experience in their team.

Match Odds

Team Betway William Hill 888 Casino
Portugal 7/2 7/2 7/2
Draw 9/4 9/4 9/4
Spain 17/20 10/11 7/8

France vs Australia

France vs Australia - 16 June 2018 – Kazan Arena, Kazan, Russia

16 June 2018 – Kazan Arena, Kazan, Russia

France boast at least 3 players with claims to being the best in the world at the moment in their position and French coach Didier Deschamps’ greatest hurdle for this clash with Australia’s Socceroos is cutting down his endless player options in almost every position to only 11 starters.

The Australians were good in their lead-up matches, but this is a step up in quality of opponent.  The French are deserved favorites.

Why are France favorites?

We could name the entire 23-man squad as the reason the French are favorites, but keeping it to 3, you’ll get the idea.

Antoine Greizmann – scores all types of goals from any position both in and outside the penalty area. If he scores 6 goals like he did at the Euro 2016 competition, France will be almost impossible to stop.

Paul Pogba – The Manchester United star is a midfield beast and has all the silky skills. Pogba is a superb athlete that can run all day from box-to-box as well as a sharp eye for goal. No wonder he’s the second-most expensive footballer in history.

Kylian Mbappe – Mbappe is unbelievably, still a teenager.

Blessed with blistering speed and a bullet of a shot, the Paris Saint Germain winger Mbappe just may be France’s X-factor in their quest to win a second FIFA World Cup.

Match Odds

Team Betway William Hill 888 Casino
France 2/9 2/11 3/14
Draw 19/4 5-1 21/4
Australia 12-1 14-1 13-1

Argentina vs Iceland

Argentina vs Iceland - 16 June 2018 – Otkrytiye Arena, Moscow, Russia


16 June 2018 – Otkrytiye Arena, Moscow, Russia

Argentina are not as strong as they have been in past World Cups and a lot will depend on how much support Lionel Messi, the world’s best footballer, receives from his Argentinian team mates. Argentina are favorites for the clash with Iceland.

Why are Argentina favorites?

Simply put, two reasons only, Lionel Messi and reputation (having won the World Cup twice – in 1978 and 1986) and appearing in two losing finals.

The Argentines struggled through qualifying and only scraped through on the back on a Lionel Messi hat-trick at the eleventh hour.

That’s the kicker – if Messi performs, they can beat anyone. If not, they can be beaten easily.

Iceland could surprise us all.

Match Odds

Team Betway William Hill 888 Casino
Argentina 4/11 1/3 1/3
Draw 7/2 7/2 19/5
Iceland 8-1 8-1 19/2

Germany vs Mexico

Germany vs Mexico - 17 June 2018 – Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow, Russia

17 June 2018 – Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow, Russia

Germany’s Joachim Löw is a seriously talented football coach and is looking to secure his second successive World Cup.

Even more talented than Löw is the quality of the footballers at his disposal across all positions with a wonderful blend of experience and youthful talent. Germany are favorites.

Why are Germany favorites?

There are nations with more individual stars entering this World Cup, but it’s always foolhardy to rule out the German squad in any World Cup. Germany won their fourth title in Brazil four years ago and have reached the World Cup Final in exactly half of the World Cups they have entered post-World War II.

Germany rely on the collective spirit and teamwork and Toni Kroos, Thomas Muller, Mesut Ozil, Mats Hummels, Jerome Boateng and Joshua Kimmich are among the best players in the world in their positions.

Match Odds

Team Betway William Hill 888 Casino
Germany 9/20 4/9 5/11
Draw 16/5 16/5 33/10
Mexico 6-1 11/2 13/2

Brazil vs Switzerland

Brazil vs Switzerland - 17 June 2018 – Rostov Arena, Rostov-on_Don, Russia

17 June 2018 – Rostov Arena, Rostov-on_Don, Russia

Other than Brazil just being Brazil, they have a seriously good team and hell-bent on revenge for their 7-1 defeat to Germany in the 2014 World Cup semi-final. Brazil are favorites.

Why are Brazil favorites?

Brazilian superstar and the world’s most expensive footballer, Neymar, now has buddies to help share the load. Brazil’s defense has been strengthened and the team now has strong centre-backs and full-backs.

Philippe Coutinho, Willian, Fernandinho, Renato Augusto and fellow forward Gabriel Jesus now provide multiple tools to partner Neymar as offensive threats.

If Brazil don’t win the World Cup, they should go very close to doing so.

Match Odds

Team Betway William Hill 888 Casino
Brazil 2/5 4/11 7/19
Draw 100/30 18/5 18/5
Switzerland 7-1 13/2 17/2

Belgium vs Panama

Belgium vs Panama - 18 June 2018 - Fisht Olympic Stadium, Sochi, Russia

18 June 2018 – Fisht Olympic Stadium, Sochi, Russia

Outside the usual favorites of past winners, Belgium are the perhaps the best side on paper at the 2018 World Cup who are yet to win the big dance.

Panama are the huge underdogs and appear to be out-classed. Belgium are favorites.

Why are Belgium favorites?

Belgium boast a star-studded line-up. Kompany, De Bruyne, Hazard, Lukaku are all superstars, as is the man attempting to sculpt them together as a unit, Italian coach Roberto Martinez.

If Martinez can fix Belgium’s leaky defense, they become a serious title contender.

It should not matter against Panama. Belgium should win easily.

Match Odds

Team Betway William Hill 888 Casino
Belgium 1/6 1/8 1/8
Draw 6-1 13/2 13/2
Panama 14-1 16-1 22-1

England vs Tunisia

England vs Tunisia 18 June 2018 - Volograd Arena

18 June 2018 – Volgograd Arena, Volgograd, Russia

England almost always make it into lists of everyone’s genuine World Cup contenders each-and-every World Cup as much due to a romanticized version of World Cup history (read ‘1966’) than it does to any real talent or form.

However, on this occasion, Gareth Southgate’s team ooze attacking talent and in Harry Kane they posses a world-class leader and goal sneak. England are favorites.

Why are England favorites?

The team has some serious quality in the middle of the pitch in Dele Alli, Dier, Henderson and Jesse Lingard and Kane, Raheem Sterling and Marcus Rashford up top. However, at the back are John Stones, Phil Jones and Gary Cahill good enough to contend with the big boys?

Not to worry about that here, they should be strong enough for Tunisia and move on. If not, the recriminations will start swiftly for Gareth Southgate.

Match Odds

Team Betway William Hill 888 Casino
England 4/11 1/3 3/8
Draw 7/2 10/3 17/5
Tunisia 8-1 17/2 17/2


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