Thu, Jun 7, 12:25pm by Staff Writer
Group F of the 2018 FIFA World Cup features defending champions Germany, as well as Mexico, Sweden and South Korea.
Germany are one of the favourites to claim the 2018 World Cup and become the first nation to defend the title since the 1958 and 1962 Brazilian sides.
At $6 at Sportsbet, Germany are second favourites behind Brazil at $5 and should have no trouble qualifying for the knockout stages from group F.
Germany are $1.04 to finish in the top two of group F and are short-priced favourites at $1.30 to top the group.
Germany’s qualification record was ridiculous, with ten wins out of ten, scoring 43 goals and only conceding four. Coach Joachim Low has a tremendous number of players to pick from, with many in form and playing in the world’s top leagues.
With so many great players, Real Madrid’s Toni Kroos is the highlight, with the midfielder the anchor of the team in the centre of the park. The team is blessed with depth across the park, with Manuel Neuer and Marc-Andre ter Stegen among the best goalkeeper in the world.
In attack, Thomas Muller and Mario Gomez are likely to get starts, with a host of midfield players likely to be among the goals including Marco Reus, Mesut Ozil, Sami Khedira and Julian Draxler.
Mexico has been a regular fixture in World Cups for some time, with the central American nation appearing in its 12th World Cup. They have had a strong record of progressing to the round of 16, but have been eliminated at that stage in their last six tournaments.
El Tri are $5.50 to top group F, but are one of the teams favoured to progress through group F at $1.83 at Sportsbet.
They face a tough opening fixture against Germany in Moscow, before matches against South Korea and a potentially decisive fixture against Sweden.
Possessing one of the world’s most football mad nations and a local competition that has come along in leaps and bounds in recent times, Mexico is a rising power in the international scene.
Javier Hernandez is likely to lead his country, with plenty of talent across the park playing in Europe and South America, with Mexico $101 to win the World Cup.
Swedish coach Janne Andersson made a tough call before the tournament, opting against naming LA Galaxy striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic for the World Cup.
The Swedish side is certainly lacking without the charismatic striker, who will be sorely missed in Russia.
Nonetheless, Sweden were very competitive in qualification, knocking out Italy and the Netherlands in the process, and that was without relying solely on Ibrahimovic.
Where Sweden’s goals will now come from is the biggest question, with no standout players in attack or in the midfield. They will be relying on strong defensive performance and look overpriced to qualify from group F given their lack of star power.
The Scandinavian’s are $151 to win the World Cup and $2.10 to qualify from group F. Although unlikely, they are paying $6.50 to top the group.
South Korea will take part in the 9th consecutive World Cup in Russia and are a team familiar to Australian audiences.
Their best performance at a World Cup was in the unforgettable 2002 tournament, where they reached the semi-finals as co-hosts, eliminating Italy.
Qualification was not as smooth as many predicted for South Korea, with coach Uli Stielike relieved of his duties and replaced by Shin Tae-yong.
South Korea has been knocked out at the group stage in seven of their nine World Cup appearance and will be relying on Tottenham’s Son Heung-min for goals.
The attacking midfielder is the team’s bigger star and a lot hinges on his ability to create and finish goals if they are to progress in group F.
They are outsiders to do so at $20 to top group F and $5 to qualify for the knockout stage.
Their opening match is against Sweden in Nizhny Novgorod. They are $501 to win the World Cup.
Suggested Bet: Mexico to progress at $1.83
Group F Winner
South Korea $20
To qualify from Group F
South Korea $5
Germany $1.40 Draw $4.20 Mexico $7.50
Sweden $2.10 Draw $3.10 South Korea $3.75
South Korea $501
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