World Cup Betting - Will Australia pass the group stage?

Bert van Marwijk’s squad might not contain the star quality of previous Australian World Cup qualifiers...

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  • To qualify from Group C – Australia @ 4/1 (5.00) with Centrebet
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In qualifying for World Cup 2018, the Socceroos endured a record-breaking 22-match campaign and Australia go to Russia ranked as the outsiders in the Group C betting odds, behind France, Denmark and Peru.

Bert van Marwijk’s squad might not contain the star quality of previous Australian World Cup qualifiers, but the Dutchman’s selection has plenty of attacking options in it and they will fancy their chances of securing a top two finish in Group C.

It might be a positive that what is deemed to be their most difficult game is first up, with Kazan being the venue on Saturday 16th June for the clash with France.  The French are justifiably seen as one of the favourites for the World Cup and have a squad the equal of any at the finals.

However, it might just take them a game or two to hit their stride in Russia and gives Australia a hope of pulling off a positive result.

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In reality, given the calibre of players such as Antoine Griezmann, Kylian Mbappe and Paul Pogba, if France play anywhere close to their potential, they will beat the Socceroos.  A narrow loss need not be disastrous though, as goal difference could well come into play when it comes to qualification for the knockout stage.

The second game is probably the most crucial for Australian hopes of reaching the knockout stage of the tournament, with Denmark considered the second best team in Group C behind the French.  Realistically, unless Australia can take something from the France game, defeat to the Danes on Thursday 21st June in Samara will probably all but end their hopes of a place in the last 16.

The key to stopping Denmark is to stop Christian Eriksen, with the Tottenham Hotspur man being absolutely pivotal in Age Hareide’s team.  Eriksen takes a more attacking role for his national team than he does at club level, operating behind a lone striker. He rattled home 11 goals in 12 appearances in qualifying, including a hat-trick in Dublin in the play-offs to see off the Republic of Ireland.

There is plenty of quality elsewhere in the Danish ranks besides Eriksen, but a draw looks well within Australia’s capabilities under a shrewd tactician like Van Marwijk.  The draw can be backed at 13/5 (3.60) with bet365 (*at the time of writing) and looks an attractive bet at this stage.

Last up are Peru in Sochi on Tuesday 26th June in what could either be potentially a dead-rubber or an absolutely crucial game for one or both teams.  

The Peruvians had a huge slice of good fortune in qualifying for Russia, with them being awarded a 3-0 victory away to Bolivia after having lost the game 2-0, only for their hosts to be penalized for fielding an ineligible player.

They eventually secured a play-off place where they defeated New Zealand over two legs, although they were less than convincing and struggled defensively to cope with the physical presence of Chris Wood.  That suggests that the likes of Tomi Juric and Tim Cahill could be in for a profitable time.

Australia are the outsiders in the game, but look to have every chance of securing what could be a crucial victory at odds of 5/2 (3.50) with Unibet and four points might just be enough for a place in the last 16 if France were to win all three of their group games.

Group C Straight Forecast – France/ Australia @ 5/1 with Centrebet