Could we have a new winner of the World Cup in Brazil this summer? Only eight countries have ever won the famous trophy, Spain becoming the latest when they won in South Africa, so will it be Brazil or Argentina, one of the European power houses or will we see another, new country winning in July?
Many World Cup 2014 betting tips suggest Belgium could be dark horses and the country most likely to become the ninth different winner of the World Cup. In October last year they rose to fifth in the FIFA world rankings, the highest they have ever achieved and are widely considered to have a “golden generation” of players, peaking together to potentially lead the European challenge in Brazil this summer.
They qualified from their European group with ease, winning eight and drawing two of their 10 games and also have one of the more comfortable groups to overcome before reaching the knockout stages of the World Cup. They face Algeria, Russia and South Korea in group H and it would be a major surprise if they did not qualify for the round of 16 with the depth of talent at their disposal.
Followers of the English Premier League will have seen some of that talent close up this season with Vincent Kompany, Romelu Lukaka and Eden Hazard all excelling for Manchester City, Everton and Chelsea respectively. Germany and Spain will be considered the most likely teams from Europe to do well in Brazil, unsurprising given their greater World Cup pedigree. However, Belgium are not far behind and, if they steer clear of injuries and suspensions to key players, they could do very well this summer.
South American sides are expected to do well of course on their own continent but in terms of good value World Cup qualifiers betting tips, Colombia may be worth a consideration.
Again they are a country never to have won a World Cup but who have a number of things in their favour as they look to reach the knockout stages of the competition.
They qualified from the South American group for the first time in 16 years and were drawn in a group they would be expected to qualify from, being due to face Greece, Ivory Coast and Japan. They finished second in the South American qualifying group, just behind Argentina and their total of 30 points from 16 games represents their best ever qualifying campaign and included a 4-0 win at home to Uruguay.
They will however be waiting for news of the fitness of star striker Radamel Falcao. The Monaco striker injured his knee ligaments in January and it was initially thought he would miss what would be his first World Cup. However, there is a chance of him back playing in May and, if that goes to plan, he may well make the squad.
He’s a great talent and if he was to miss the tournament, it would undoubtedly harm Colombia’s chances of making the latter stages. One advantage they will have in Brazil is the climate and, if they get through the group stages, they would hope to play European opposition in the mid-afternoon sweltering heat!