As the second week of the international break starts our attention moves away from Europe to the CONMEBOL World Cup qualifiers in South America. With five games left to go only Venezuela are definitely out of the running, making for some exciting games. I’ve put together these World Cup tips and analyses to try to find you value in your soccer betting tonight.
World Cup Tips: Bolivia v Argentina
Ninth placed Bolivia equalled an unwanted record last week in their 1-0 defeat to Colombia, drawing level with Luxembourg for the largest number of away internationals without a win at 33. With the strength of team Argentina boast, it would appear on paper that this is an easy away win for the away side.
However, at home Bolivia are a different prospect. Playing at the Estadio Hernando Siles in La Paz is a tough prospect due to the fact it’s one of the highest altitude stadiums in the world at 3,637 metres above sea level. Argentina also have a few selection issues with Javier Mascherano, Lucas Biglia, Gonzalo Higuain and Nicolas Otamendi all suspended while Gabriel Mercado and Emmanuel Mas are injured.
Everton’s Ramiro Funes Mori returns after his suspension while three Argentina-based players in Lucas Alario, Matias Caruzzo and Ivan Marcone have been called up. Bolivia are expected to play a defensive 5-4-1, looking to keep it tight and maybe frustrate Argentina enough to be able to nick it.
Argentina should win, but I don’t think there will be much in it. My World Cup tips for this one are under 2.5 goals at 1.84.
World Cup Tips: Ecuador v Colombia
Both Ecuador and Colombia are very much in the qualifying shake-up, lying fifth and fourth respectively. Only goal difference is keeping Ecuador above Chile yet the right combination of results could see them catapulted as high as second.
Ecuador started this campaign off like a train, winning four on the spin but in the next nine they’ve only won twice, understandably giving the impression their qualification hopes are going off the rails. Their defeat last week to Paraguay saw them slump out of the automatic spots and Ecuador will know that they have to arrest this further lest they completely lose their chance.
Ecuador have got a good home record – four wins and a draw from six – while Colombia’s only two away victories have come against Paraguay and Bolivia. Radamel Falcao’s absence robs Colombia of some of their forward strength although they still have James Rodriguez who scored the winner for them on Thursday.
It’s normally folly to bet against the home side in South America and with Colombia not having won in Quito since 1996 I can’t see a compelling reason to do so here. My World Cup tips for this game are Ecuador to win at 2.11.
World Cup Tips: Brazil v Paraguay
Paraguay have had something of a hold over Brazil in recent years. A win on penalties following the 1-1 draw in the Copa America quarter-finals was one of the low points of Dunga’s reign as Brazil boss; not mentioning the fact it replicated the result of four years previously.
Brazil have actually drawn their last four meetings with Paraguay, with the reverse fixture in this campaign only resulting in a draw after Brazil fought back from 2-0 down to equalise in injury time through Dani Alves.
The Brazilian side is a much better and stronger one now though – as evidenced by their clear lead at the top of the qualifying table. Paraguay are generally poor away from home too and as such my World Cup tips for this one are Brazil to win with a -1 handicap at 1.46.
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