As the NFL celebrates its 100 anniversary, the league welcomes the Kansas City Chiefs back to the Super Bowl for the first time in 50 years. The Chiefs, 1.5-point favorites in Super Bowl 54, won Super Bowl 4 23-7 over the Minnesota Vikings as 12-point underdogs. Their opponents, the San Francisco 49ers have won five of six Super Bowl appearances but none since a 1995 victory in Super Bowl 29.
Argentina vs Iceland Odds
Argentina vs Iceland World Cup Odds
Argentina and Iceland get their World Cup quest off the ground at 14:00 local time on Saturday 16th June at the Otkrytiye Arena in Moscow.
Argentina vs Iceland PredictionArgentina to score over 2.5 goals +130 Bet Now
Argentina struggled during qualification yet they are still the fifth-favorites to win the 2018 World Cup thanks to the wealth of talent their coach can choose from. Having Lionel Messi in your side always gives you a chance of winning games; Messi is arguably the best footballer in the world. Bovada think Argentina will win this game comfortably and have priced an Argentina win at -300.
Iceland have odds of +900 for their victory with the draw coming in at +400. While Iceland have been shown to be able to produce a strong defensive display, Argentina have too many options going forwards and we can see Iceland crumbling under the pressure. Back Argentina to score over 2.5 goals at +130 especially as Iceland conceded three goals in their recent friendly games against Mexico and Peru, neither of who have anywhere near the quality of Argentina.
Argentina vs Iceland Key Bites
- Lionel Messi has scored hat tricks in two of his previous three games
- Many of Argentina’s squad will be playing in their last World Cup
- Iceland performed miracles at Euro 2016, can they repeat them in Russia?
- Argentina is poor defensively but Iceland lack an out-and-out goalscorer
- The Argentinians are dependent on Messi, stop him, stop Argentina?
Iceland are competing in their first World Cup finals and have come a long way in the past few years, but the World Cup will be their biggest challenge yet and it remains to be seen whether they can handle the immense pressure put on players.
Argentina, on the other hands, are veterans on the world stage having qualified for 17 World Cups and having lifted the winner’s trophy twice. The nucleus of their squad is made up of players who ply their trade for European football’s elite sides so they are used to playing on the biggest stage.
Many of Argentina’s squad are likely to be playing in their last World Cup, including Lionel Messi who is now 30-years-old and has already retired from the national team before. Messi scored 34 goals in 35 La Liga games for Barcelona this season and was Argentina’s top scorer in qualifying with seven goals. If Messi brings his magic to the table, Argentina could go far in the competition, starting with a victory over Iceland.
Argentina vs Iceland Betting Trends
- Argentina were +900 fifth-favorites to win the World Cup before the tournament started despite a difficult qualifying campaign.
- This is the 17th World Cup finals Argentina has qualified for.
- Argentina has reached the semi-finals five times, the final five times and has won the competition twice, the last time being in 1986.
- Argentina were the runner-up in the 2014 World Cup.
- Argentina has won 42, draw 14 and lost 21 of its 77 World Cup finals matches, scoring 131 goals and conceding 84 during that time.
- Argentina have never played Iceland before.
- Lionel Messi was Argentina’s top scorer in qualifying, netting seven goals; no other Argentinian scored more than two goals.
- Argentina have lost 4-2 to Nigeria in a Russia-based friendly in November 2017 and lost 6-1 to Spain in Madrid in March 2018.
- Iceland were priced at +15000 to win the World Cup before the tournament commenced.
- This is the first time Iceland has qualified for the World Cup finals.
- Gylfi Sigurdsson is Iceland’s key player having scored four goals and created four assists during Iceland’s qualifying campaign.
- Iceland shocked the world in 2016 when they reached the quarter-finals of the European Championships, eliminating England along the way.
- Iceland finished top of their qualifying group with seven wins, one drawn and two defeats from 10 games. Iceland scored 16 goals and conceded seven in those matches.
- Two friendly games in the United States in March 2018 saw Iceland lose 3-0 to Mexico and 3-1 to Peru.
Argentina vs Iceland World Cup Preview
It must be frustrating being a fan of Argentina. The team has a wealth of attacking options with players who would get into any team in the world and when they click they look unstoppable, but they also sometimes fall apart and look lost on the field of play.
Argentina have won the World Cup on two occasions and have been runners-up three times, most recently in 2014. This squad has been ranked as fifth favorites with Bovada with odds of +900 and while some think this could be a shrewd outside bet, we believe you should save your money because you do not know which Argentina side is going to turn up to Russia.
Lionel Messi almost single handedly dragged Argentina to the World Cup finals. The Barcelona maestro now has 61 goals in 123 appearances for the national side and shows no sign of slowing down despite recently hitting 30-years-old. Messi has already retired from international football once, perhaps this could be his swansong?
Messi scored a hat trick in the 3-1 away win at Ecuador to secure Argentina’s path to Russia. He bagged another in the 4-0 win over Haiti in his side’s final warm-up game before the World Cup.
These results are all well and good but you also need to be aware that Argentina were demolished 6-1 by Spain in March and were leading Nigeria 2-0 in November before losing the game 4-2. You cannot afford to defend like Argentina have if you want to progress in this tournament.
If coach Jorge Sampaoli’s tactics are to simply outscore the opposition he has plenty of players to help him achieve his goals. Sergio Aguero is likely to lead the line and only two players in history have scored more goals for Argentina than the Manchester City forward.
Sampaoli can also call upon Angel Di Maria who has lightning pace, Gonzalo Higuain and Juventus’ Paulo Dybala. The latter has immense talent but only scored one goal in his last eight matches for Juventus in Serie A so is not in the hottest of form.
Iceland gained the respect of the footballing world when they progressed to the quarter-finals where they were well beaten 5-2 by France. Nobody expects Iceland to repeat those heroics this time around and that lack of pressure could work in their favor.
There are few teams in the world who work as hard as Iceland, but they need an end product for all that determination and closing down. Unlike Argentina, Iceland do not have any players who would be considered superstars who can win a game that is seemingly lost.
Iceland need Lady Luck to shine on them in terms of keeping key players fit. Aron Gunnarsson only returned to action in April after a lengthy layoff while Everton’s Gylfi Sigurdsson hasn’t featured in the Premier LEague since early March. Without these two dynamic midfielders running the show, Iceland could seriously struggle in Russia.
Argentina will be hoping to get their 2018 World Cup campaign off to a flying start while Iceland would undoubtedly be happy with a share of the points, instead focussing on Nigeria and possibly Croatia as a team they are more likely to beat.
Bovada price an Argentina victory at -300 with a -0.5 spread available at -115 and it is the latter that does look more appealing to a punter. Another bet that looks particularly tasty is Lionel Messi or Alfred Finnbogason to score first at +135. Both of these players are their respective country’s best attacking threat and any opening goal is likely to come from one of them.
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