World Cup Group A Preview
World Cup group A is home to the hosts Russia, and they have been handed a draw against Uruguay, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. The will fancy their chances to get out of that group, although with the pressure of playing at home and the fact that they are not the force we have seen in the past, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see them struggle here. Uruguay are favourites to take the group, with Russia second best, but can the host team live up to the lofty expectations placed on them?
Their qualification hopes depend on whether they can use their home advantage as a positive, or whether they will crack under the pressure. Expectation is mounting in Russia, but the team they have is not as good as Russian teams we have seen in the past. If this competition was played anywhere else, I’d be opposing Russia at every opportunity.
This Uruguay team is the best in the group for me, and I fully expect them to show that. They have enough about them to take care of their three opponents in this group, and can make the knockout stages. While defensively they are perhaps not the best, they have some attacking threats and will be good to watch throughout the tournament.
The Egyptians will be hoping Mo Salah can continue his fantastic Liverpool form when he plays for them in the World Cup, and if he does they could be value to qualify from the group. They have shown up well in recent African qualifying games as well as the African Cup of Nations, and cannot be discounted to take advantage of any slip up Russia should make.
While Saudi Arabia are fancied to finish bottom of the group, they do have enough quality in their team to keep qualifying for events like this, it is very rare a big tournament goes by without seeing them. They look up against it here, and will be looking to keep things tight and pick up any points they can, although that will be tough for them.
Group A Bet
Uruguay look a good bet to win this group but if you are looking for value then add Egypt to finish second in the hope that they can take advantage of the pressure on the Russians.
Straight Forecast – 1st Uruguay 2nd Egypt (6/1 with ladbrokes)
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