Written by Rick John Henry for @Hollywoodbets. Follow them both on Twitter and Facebook now!
The race to qualify for Russia 2018 is certainly starting to heat up. There are some massive qualifying fixtures taking place this midweek with Paraguay and Brazil squaring off as well as Colombia and Ecuador going head to head.
The international break always offers up a fantastic opportunity to make some cash and this week will be no different!
Tuesday 29 March
Colombia 7/10 | Draw 26/10 | Ecuador 39/10
Although I expect Colombia to have enough to find the three points against Bolivia, this will be a tough encounter against an Ecuadorian side in good form. Colombia’s form has been largely wretched of late and it’s strange that a team containing the talent of Colombia should struggle on the international stage. Their World Cup run was nothing short of sensational but since then the Colombians have been lacklustre. Ecuador look to be on the brink of something special and I will advise backing the away Win/Draw Double Chance in this one.
Wednesday 30 March
Uruguay 3/10 | Draw 36/10 | Peru 8/1
As mentioned, the return of Luis Suarez will no doubt change how Uruguay go about their business. The striker is in a class of his own at present and it’s entirely conceivable that he will help fire Barcelona to a second consecutive treble. Uruguay have only lost one of their qualifying matches without the influential forward. Peru will likely struggle to get a result in this one. Their 1-0 win over Paraguay - a team they have a good record against - are their only qualifying points to date. I’m expecting a comfortable home win here.
Argentina | TBA | Bolivia
Argentina were forced to begin their qualifying campaign with injuries to key personnel, a possible explanation for a truly shoddy run of form. Argentina have won only one of their past five matches, a 1-0 win away in Colombia in their last outing with a goal from Lucas Biglia. One can only assume that La Albiceleste will continue to improve during the course of the qualifying campaign. Bolivia have a woeful form line and were hammered 7-0 by Argentina in a warm-up to World Cup qualifying. I can only advise backing the home win here.
Venezuela 3/1 | Draw 24/10 | Chile 8/10
Something will have to give for Venezuela at some stage at one feels that this could be the match that they come up with an upset. Being back at home will suit Venezuela, as previous to their lacklustre run they had a decent home record. Despite Chile possessing a wealth of talent, I have my doubts about both their porous defence as well as their brand new manager. Pizzi will take some time to settle at the helm and will quickly realise that international football can be a cruel mistress. This is the time for a decent bet on the outside home win which will likely be available at attractive odds.
Paraguay 22/10 | Draw 22/10 | Brazil 12/10
I alluded previously to Paraguay’s sturdy defence and they will have to be at their best when hosting Brazil. Although I’ve tipped Paraguay to lose to Ecuador, they’re certainly no pushovers and will make thing tricky for Brazil. Paraguay always raise their game a notch when meeting the Samba Boys and haven’t lost to them in the last three times of asking. Indeed, Paraguay haven’t lost a home match with Brazil - albeit the meetings being few and far between - since 1985. Brazil certainly have quality on their side but Paraguay are organised and play with heart. The home Win/Draw Double Chance could turn out to be a winner.
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