World Cup | Day Eight | Preview and Odds

We’re into the second round of matches at the World Cup – where sides can take a big step towards qualification from the groups, or start to pack their bags to go home.

Our football expert has taken a look at the three games being played on day eight, and runs through the best world cup bets.

Denmark v Australia

Denmark can all-but book their place in the World Cup knockouts with a win over Australia in the first match on Thursday.

Yussef Poulsen’s second-half strike gave the Danes victory over Peru on Saturday – but his side rode their luck to get there.

Kasper Schmeichel stood firm to record a fifth clean sheet in a row (surpassing his dad’s record) – thanks to Christian Cueva’s missed penalty.

The Danes are chasing their first knockout match since 2002, and are 19/20 with to claim the win here.

Australia were unlucky in their 2-1 defeat to France – with the two goals they conceded coming through a contentious VAR decision, and an own goal.

The Socceroos know they could be eliminated unless they win – with an Australian victory being priced at 3/1.

Both sides struggled going forwards in their opening games, but Denmark’s Christian Eriksen provided a rare moment of quality with an assist for his side’s only goal.

I think the Tottenham man can be the difference between the sides again too.

With Denmark so strong at the back, I can’t see Australia breaking them down.

Back the Danes to win to nil at 2/1.

France v Peru

France sit in the box seat in Group C after their win over Australia – and like Denmark, know a win will see them safely through to the knockouts.

Didier Deschamps’ men flattered to deceive against the Aussies though, and will need to improve if they are to live up to their potential in this tournament.

A Peruvian side who haven’t won at a World Cup since 1978 might be a good start.

France are 3/5 to win here.

Peru threw everything they had at Denmark in their first game, but lacked the composure in front of goal to find the net.

With star striker Paolo Guerrero likely to lead the line, they’ll hope to have that extra quality here.

Peru are 5/1 to win this one.

So far, this has been a World Cup of upsets – with Brazil, Germany, Spain and Argentina all failing to win their first matches.

While France came out on top against Australia, I think Peru can pull off a relative surprise here and nick something – especially if the French are as below-par as at the weekend.

Back a draw at 3/1.

Argentina v Croatia

One of the standout matches of the group stage sees the 2014 finalists come up against one of the 2018 dark horses – Argentina v Croatia.

Argentina struggled through their opening match against Iceland – despite taking the lead, they were pegged back, and Lionel Messi’s missed penalty saw them labour to a 1-1 draw.

They are evens to beat Croatia here.

Croatia looked impressive in their 2-0 win over Nigeria – though the African side did look very ordinary.

They had to rely on an own-goal and a penalty, but with the likes of Luka Modric, Ivan Rakitic and Mario Mandzukic in their ranks, they’ll be hoping for a repeat of their 1998 heroics, where they made the semi-final.

I really like this Croatia side – and think they can go a long way in this tournament.

Argentina look far too top heavy, and their defence was creaking against Iceland, meaning there could be room for the Croats to exploit.

A draw (at 5/2) may be enough for Croatia, given Argentina’s failure to win first up – but the 3/1 on Croatia to win looks far to tempting to ignore.





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