2022-11-29

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World Cup predictions, odds, best bets today: Betting tips, expert picks for Friday, November 25 – Sporting News

With the first round of the group stage now complete, we have a clearer picture of what each participating nation has in store for the tournament.
Now, Groups A & B return to the field with everything all on the line. The highlight of the day is the enormous Black Friday matchup between the United States and England, with the U.S. hoping to spring an upset with the whole nation watching. The U.S. would also love Wales to drop points against Iran.
Meanwhile, the Netherlands hopes to gain firm control of Group A against fellow Round 1 victors Ecuador, while hosts Qatar hope for a better result in front of their home fans as they take on Senegal.
Check out all of our picks below.
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While this match likely won’t feature many goals, Wales should have enough to win it. Gareth Bale is the main man of course, but Kieffer Moore will present a bigger goal threat. It’s likely the latter will start given his positive introduction against the United States at halftime, and backing him to score at +175 isn’t a bad idea either, but with so few goals expected, that’s probably not quite good enough to get behind. Instead, bet on the better team with plus odds to come out ahead.
Because of the cagey nature expected in this game, and the stakes on it, you can expect the second half to be the more open one. Both sides will likely look to get to halftime without having conceded before truly opening things up. That’s exactly what Wales attempted to do against the United States, while Iran will hope to defend better than they did against a talented England side. Wales will want to win the match, but they’ll fancy their chances in the final 45 minutes after having wrapped up a safe and tidy first half. The hunt for a superior goal differential will fuel that as well. — Kyle Bonn
MORE: Full Wales vs. Iran betting breakdown, with odds, picks, predictions, team news, and more
With the home fans at their backs, host nation Qatar fell flat on its face, failing to put up a fight in their opening match of the World Cup. It was a massive letdown for the hosts, who were expected to benefit from the “host bump” that normally sees the home side receive an intangible boost with a crowd predominantly in their favor. Instead, Qatar flopped, proving that they just don’t belong in the field. On the flip side, Senegal put up a good fight against the Netherlands and were done in by poor finishing and a pair of good Dutch goals. Here, Ismaila Sarr and Boylaye Dia should both prove a menace, and see the African side to a crucial three points. — Kyle Bonn
MORE: Full Qatar vs. Senegal betting breakdown, with odds, picks, predictions, team news, and more
Netherlands have wildly outperformed their expected goals value on multiple occasions over their last seven matches, and at some point that will come to roost. Against Senegal in the group stage opener, they scored twice while hardly creating any chances (0.67 xG). Against a defensively stout side like Ecuador, who can keep the ball for stretches when needed, Netherlands will find it hard to get through.
That will be the same on the flip side. Ecuador have Enner Valencia, who doubled up in the opener against Qatar, but he was banged up in that match, and will find the going much tougher against Virgil van Dijk and Matthijs de Ligt. One of these teams will end up shut out. — Kyle Bonn
MORE: Full Netherlands vs. Ecuador betting breakdown, with odds, picks, predictions, team news, and more
While the United States will know a result here could make the difference between qualification and elimination, it’s hard to imagine them coming out with a result.
The USMNT has struggled to create significant chances in recent matches, and they come into this game having expended an incredible amount of energy in their opener against Wales. Weston McKennie clearly isn’t fully match fit, and Yunus Musah looked shattered upon his 74th minute withdrawal, and there’s very little midfield depth to spell either one. England should find themselves quite comfortable in this match, as long as they can handle the U.S. press through the first half-hour.
While the United States may prove pesky in the opening 45 minutes with their press, they have been terrible after halftime in recent memory. Gregg Berhalter has not been timely with his substitutions, out-coached in the second half by Wales boss Rob Page just days ago. Meanwhile, the lack of midfield depth serves to leave the United States sucking wind late in the match as well.
Conversely, England have been better in the second half of matches. While they conceded late to Iran once the game had already been decided, that won’t be the case here and they’ll be motivated to keep the clean sheet rather than go for a big win.
Finally, let’s talk yellow cards. The official in this match, Venezuelan referee Jesus Valenzuela, is a card machine. With the U.S. likely to be out of possession for much of this game, cards could get thrown around, and three for a team isn’t a terribly high bar to clear for plus odds. — Kyle Bonn
MORE: Full England vs. USA betting breakdown, with odds, picks, predictions, team news, and more
The 2022 World Cup continues to prove an impossible beast to crack. Yet again, a combination of surprise results, bad luck, and difficult odds have thwarted our best efforts.
In Nathan’s first go this tournament, his picks in the early games fell flat, as only Switzerland found the back of the net while Cameroon, Uruguay, and South Korea came away wishing for more. The Uruguay vs. South Korea game was especially frustrating, as both team’s talented players came away with disappointing performances.
Then, Neymar was injured as Brazil put away a disappointing Serbia side, and Ghana gave Portugal a real fight. Some late drama provided the day’s only successful selection as Ghana and Portugal forced American referee Ismael Elfath to show plenty of cautions, but otherwise the day was another flop.
The process feels right, but the tournament has provided plenty of surprises. If there’s any consolation, picking winners has proven far more successful, as those have come through nearly two-thirds of the time. We go again!
Records below compiled since the first edition of this post on Monday, October 3. Sporting News betting contributors include Kyle Bonn, Nathan Evans, and Simon Borg.
With the opening game of the World Cup here, below is a reminder of our World Cup futures selections.
Kyle has gone with tournament favorites Brazil to win the competition, as the Selecao have the most talented and deepest squad in the field. On the back of that pick, Neymar is the selection for Golden Boot winner as the tournament’s top scorer. He’s selected Argentina to win Group C as a favorite, plus Uruguay to win Group H as an underdog to Portugal.
There’s one top team that should fall early, and that’s France who have a soft group, but injuries and poor form could come back to haunt them early in the knockout stage. Finally, the upset picks are Japan to qualify from a difficult Group E, requiring them to pip one of Spain or Germany. Then, he’s gone for Canada to grab an upset in Group F and advance past the likes of Belgium or Croatia.

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