After qualifying tournaments worldwide the last couple of years it all came to a conclusion this week when the last of the 32 teams secured their spot in next year’s World Cup in Russia as Peru beat New Zealand 2-0. So what else do we know? The tournament next summer will have a few unexpected participants missing as Italy, USA, Netherlands and Chile all failed to qualify. Who are the favorites and will we see a surprise side emerge much like Costa Rica did in 2014? Below are current odds to win the World Cup Russia 2018 tournament and as expected Germany, Brazil and France are listed as favorites along with perennial fan favorites Spain and Argentina. The draw takes place on December 1st where we’ll see the 32 sides divided into 8 groups of 4 and find out who the Group of Death is in this edition of the World Cup.
2018 FIFA World Cup Predictions: Can an underdog emerge next summer allowing us to cash a nice priced futures ticket? It’s a definite possibility when looking at current odds courtesy of Westgate Sportbook in Las Vegas. Three sides that have definite line value are Portugal at 15/1 as the Cristiano Ronaldo led side come in as the defending European Champions and will look to parlay their form and success similar to what Spain did in 2010 after winning the 2008 Euro’s. Next up is England. YES don’t choke on that coffee, I did say England. At 20/1 this side that now possesses some younger talent and did go through qualifying unbeaten (8 wins 2 draws) while allowing only 3 goals and their manager Gareth Southgate has them playing a tighter defensive style which could pay dividends next year and at 20/1 it provides us with some hedging opportunities into the knockout stages. Finally, a side I believe could make a run similar to what Costa Rica did in 2014 is Croatia at 25-1. This side started the qualifying stages in great form but a couple tough road defeats sent them to a 2 game playoff with Greece but their quality came through and they dispatched the Greeks and booked their spot. Once again at 25-1 they offer great hedging opportunities later or we can ride them out and cash a big futures ticket. Odds are all likely to change somewhat after the draw on December 1st. Check back later for more information and a comprehensive preview on the World Cup and all group stage previews and predictions.