World Cup Odds

On this page you find articles on World Cup Odds and sports betting in general.

England 3/1 odds at Ladbrokes to host World Cup 2030

Football Betting
PM Theresa May has put some support towards England hosting the 2030 World Cup and online betting site Ladbrokes have responded by pricing up at 3/1 odds* (betting odds taken from July 17th, 2018 at 6:49 pm) England playing hosts in 12 years time. The next two World Cups are already locked into place with the 2022 edition being hosted in Qatar. That will be a ground-breaking tournament as it will be played starting in November, the first time in the World Cup has not been hosted in the summer. It is also the first time in World Cup has been hosted in the middle east and the tournament will be the biggest ever with 48 teams taking part. Following that the 2026 edition of the World Cup will be heading to Canada, Mexico and the United States after a successful joint bid by them. So as the World Cup is subject to a continental rotation policy, it could well bring Europe back into play with the main challengers likely be in South America and Africa. England has only hosted the tournament once before which was back in 1966 and that brought home success for the Three Lions. Alex Apati of Ladbrokes said: “A successful England bid for the 2030 World Cup has never looked more likely. Football could finally be coming home!”

France 7/1 odds to repeat in 2022 World Cup Winner Odds

Football Betting
The World Cup 2018 is in the book with France collecting the trophy for the second time in their history. Les Bleus recorded a thrilling and at times controversial 4-2 win over Croatia in the final, with two of the stars of that final collecting personal awards. Croatia’s Luka Modric got the World Cup Golden Ball while Kylian Mbappe collected the young player award. So now we have to wait another four years to see if it will be more European success at Qatar 2022. That, of course, is when there will be a new chapter starting for the World Cup. The number of teams taking part will be expanded from the current 32 up to 48 teams. It will also be the first ever World Cup to not be held in the summer as it is scheduled to start on November 21st, 2022 to avoid the heat of the Qatari summer. Despite falling short at the quarter-final stage of 2018 to Belgium, Brazil are the early 6/1 odds favourites at bet365* (Betting Odds were taken from July 15th, 2018 at 10:58 p.m.) to win the 2022 World Cup. Will they be able to stop the dominance of European teams at the tournament? Each of the last four editions now of the World Cup have been lifted by a European nation (Italy, Spain, Germany and France). France will be heading off to Qatar as the reigning World Champions and they are joint 7/1 second-favourites* (Betting Odds were taken from July 15th, 2018 at 10:58 p.m.) alongside Germany and Spain to taste success. After the positives that England’s young Three Lions produced in Russia this summer after finishing fourth, they are 14/1 odds to go and take the title in four year’s time. Will there be Lionel Messi there? Will there be a Cristiano Ronaldo there? Time will tell.

2022 World Cup Winner Odds*

Brazil 6/1 France 7/1 Germany 7/1 Argentina 10/1 Belgium 12/1 England 14/1 Italy 16/1 Netherlands 20/1 Portugal 25/1 Croatia 40/1 Uruguay 40/1 Colombia 40/1 Chile 50/1 Mexico 66/1 Bar 100/1 * (Betting Odds were taken from July 15th, 2018 at 10:58 p.m.)

World Cup 2018 Golden Glove & Golden Ball Betting Odds & Predictions

World Cup 2018 Betting
We are heading into the final weekend of the 2018 World Cup and at the end of all of this, there will be some awards to be dished out by FIFA. So beyond your 2018 World Cup Final betting, there are still some other markets that you can look at to round off your betting action on the tournament with. Here we are going to look at some of the individual awards that are going to be up for grabs.

Golden Glove Odds*

This goes to the top goalkeeper at the tournament and it doesn’t necessarily mean it will go the keeper who had had the best tournament in terms of clean sheets. There could, of course, be penalty shoot heroes in there, and someone who may have conceded a few but at the same time pulled off some remarkable saves. Hugo Lloris 1/2 Danijel Subasic 13/8 Jordan Pickford 10/1 Thibaut Courtois 22/1 * (betting odds taken at 9:09 pm on July 13th, 2018) Prediction: It is good to see Pickford in there as he has had a great tournament for England. However, the penalty shoot-out heroics of Croatia’s Subasic will likely top anything that Pickford has done. But still, as we expect France to collect the World Cup, we are sticking with Lloris and the volume of clean sheets has recorded.

Golden Ball Odds*

Who is going to end being crowned the best player of the tournament? This is all subjective at the end of the day of course. Some of the best players in the World fell short at the tournament like Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi and the winner will come from one of the finalists. So even though Eden Hazard, who was an early tip of ours, has had such a good event, he is going to miss out. Kylian Mbappe 8/11 Luka mOdric 15/8 Antoine Griezmann 10/1 N’Golo Kante 16/1 Paul Pogba 25/1 Eden Hazard 40/1 Ivan Perisic 50/1 Harry Kane 66/1 Bar 100/1 Prediction: There is still time for this to change in the final of course, for example, if Kylian Mbappe gets a couple of goals or scores a solo-wonder then he’ll probably get it. We are sticking with an early prediction we made of Luka Modric getting the title regardless of the outcome of the World Cup Final. Overall, hands down he has outperformed anyone else on the at least with the exception may be of France’s Kante who just isn’t going to get the recognition. Stick with Modric on the contingency that Mbappe doesn’t have a stellar Final. Realistically Mbappe has only had one stand out game at this tournament, which was against Argentina in the round of sixteen. Modric has been way more consistent. So it’s Modric for us at nice 15/8 odds value* (betting odds taken at 9:09 pm on July 13th, 2018).

Top Goalscorer Odds*

Yes, it is simply down to Harry Kane who is on six and Romelu Lukaku on four. So there is a big advantage to Kane and it is going to be interesting to see them go against each other in the Third Place match on Saturday. Can Lukakku catch up to Kane? These Third PLace fixtures at World Cups have a history of being high-scoring affairs. Each of the last ten such fixtures have gone over 2.5 goals. So there could still be an exciting finish in this race really if Lukaku brings his A-Game which he failed to do in the semi-final against France. France’s Kylian Mbappe and Antoine Griezmann are not totally out of the picture but they would have to do something special to catch up, starting three goals behind Kane heading into their final match. Harry Kane 1/20 Romelu Lukaku 16/1 Antoine Griezmann 40/1 Kylian Mbappe 66/1 Bar 500/1 * (betting odds taken at 9:09 pm on July 13th, 2018) Prediction: Kane hangs on to the top goalscorer crown, but we can see Lukaku at least netting one against the Three Lions to spice things up. Lukaku looked well off the boil against France and while Kane himself has looked to have run out of steam as well, he should have done enough by now to hang on.

Winner/Top Goalscorer Double odds*

As it is Harry Kane who is the most likely to win the Golden Boot then the top options in this market are including him. So if you assume that it is going to be Kane who finishes at the top scorer, the next choice is to pair up him up with either Croatia or France as the winner of the tournament. The only other thing that you are going to consider but as a massive outside shot is Antoine Griezmann coming through with a stellar scoring performance in the final. France/Harry Kane 1/2 Croatia/Harry Kane 15/8 France/Antoine Griezmann 50/1 Bar 80/1 * (betting odds taken at 9:09 pm on July 13th, 2018) Prediction: Well we are sticking with France winning the World Cup and that cuts down the options. Is Griezmann going to go out and score the minimum of a hattrick needed to top Kane in the goalscorer charts? Not likely. The straightforward favourite option has to be backed.

World Cup 2018 Semi-Finals Predictions & Betting Odds

World Cup 2018 Betting
The final 4 teams at the 2018 World Cup will go into the high-pressure situation of the semi-final ties this week. Both semi-finals will be all-European affairs and really on the surface of things if you look at the remaining four teams who are France, England, Belgium and Croatia then you get the distinct feeling that anyone can beat anyone else on a given day. There is really not too much to separate the final four at all. Here we take a look at the World Cup 2018 semi finals along with predictions and betting odds. The only thing we do know is that it will be a European team once again being crowned world champions. As to which of the four that is going to be, that is a pretty tough call to make at the moment.

World Cup 2018 winner odds*

France 2/1 England 11/4 Belgium 11/4 Croatia 4/1 * (betting odds were taken from July 9, 2018, at 6:20 p.m.)

France v Belgium

Tuesday, July 10th - 7 PM kick-off It is France who have stayed at the front of the pack as the outright favourite to win the 2018 World Cup. But really as we said we don’t see anything much between any of the final four and this is certainly no easy game for the French. France did not one thing impressively during the group stage as they struggled to get results against Australia and Peru before playing out a meaningless draw with Denmark in their final group stage match. There was not much cohesion or conviction from them in the group stage. But maybe they were saving themselves as they have looked far better in the knockout stages of the tournament. In the round of 16, they had Kylian Mbappe step up to the plate and put on a show to help them beat Argentina 4-3. Then it was more South American opposition for them in the quarter-finals as they face up to the tough defence of Uruguay. France were far more comfortable in that one than they were against Argentina and coasted through with a 2-0 victory. Belgium are the top scorers at the 2018 World Cup and that should make France pretty nervous. After running up the goals against Panama and Tunisia in their first group stage games they too had a meaningless final match in the first stage as they beat England 1-0. Then strangely Belgium had a massive scare as they found themselves 2-0 down against Japan in the second half of their round of 16 tie. Belgium were quite frankly awful in the game but as soon as they switched to just playing a route-one game they manage to turn it around. Belgium them produce the performance of the tournament as they beat Brazil 2-1 in the quarter-finals. Belgium boss Roberto Martinez had the nous to change formation and tactics for that one and it paid off as Belgium produced their best game of the tournament. Their front three looked even more dangerous with Eden Hazard finding space, Romelu Lukaku charging at the Brazilian defence and Kevin de Bruyne being pushed further forward. This is such a tough game to call because you do wonder if Belgium are capable of replicating that same level of performance against Brazil, or did they simply hit their peak and will struggle to get back to that? France meanwhile have a look particularly great throw the tournament but they have shown that they have their big match winners and they do have more strength on the bench that Belgium do if this were to go beyond 90 minutes. Both teams have great individual talent it may just all be about who put it together better as a team on the night. Head to head Belgium are 10-9 ahead from previous meetings with France with nine drawn games as well stop the last time they met was in 2015 with Belgium taking a 4-3 win in France. It does mean that France are winless in their last three against the Belgians now (D2 L1) but the last time they did meet competitively was at the 1986 World Cup with France taking a 4-2 victory. Both teams have scored in just two of the last seven meetings between the two sides.

France v Belgium winner odds*

France 31/20 Belgium 21/10 Draw 9/4 * (betting odds were taken from July 9, 2018, at 6:20 p.m.) Prediction: We are sticking with the strength of France to find a way to win this contest. We see a France to win by a one-goal margin option at 3/1 odds* (betting odds were taken from July 9, 2018, at 6:20 p.m.) as a good betting tip for the France v Belgium game. Take nothing away from Belgium who were magnificent against Brazil, but France just look a bit more rugged and adaptable to the stresses of this semi-final.

[bbutton bookmaker="bet365"]

Croatia v England

Wednesday, July 11th - 7 PM kick-off Croatia went into this tournament as a dark horse and that was because of how strong their midfield area is. They are stacked with talent in there and it really started to shine through in the group stage as they won all three of their matches. One of those matches, of course, was against Argentina with the Europeans running out 3-0 winners over the South Americans. That was a huge statement made by Croatia and with the draw opening up, they looked as if they could just go from strength to strength. However, it didn’t quite pan out that way. In the round of 16, they had to come from behind to earn a 1-1 draw with Denmark. Croatia saw off their opponents by a penalty shootout. In the quarter-finals they had come from behind against Russia, playing out a 2-2 draw and again having to rely on a penalty shootout to progress. That is a lot of extra work that Croatia have had to do and there have been signs that it has been taking its toll on them. Some of the Croatian players look to be out on their feet in the second period of extra time against Russia. They can’t, of course, afford to go into this semi-final jaded. Croatia have been less consistent with their starting 11 lineups than England have been at this tournament. They have some great talent though notably in Luka Modric who has been one of the stars of the entire tournament, and they have a threat on the wing in Ivan Perisic. The Croatians have scored at least two goals in five of their last six games played. But what will give England hope is that they have not taken a clean sheet in any of their last three games now. How much will fatigue play in this tie? The longer this game goes on the more you would probably fancy England will have the edge because of having much younger legs. They got through their quarter-final tie in 90 min against Sweden. England were really comfortable in that game against the Swedes, looking composed and ready to get the job done. It was a stark contrast to the physical an intense battle that they had had against Colombia in the round of 16. But it showed that England can handle and deal with whatever is in front of them which is a huge plus for this young side. England are just sticking to their simple gameplan and they are not likely to change anything in terms of tactics or personnel for this one. They will perhaps just need to be on their toes a little bit more at the back because Croatia, even though they may be looking a little tired, have plenty of quality still. England clearly have their strengths from set plays but they have been lacking the creativity to create chances from open play. With the way that the draw has opened up for them and with confidence that they are playing with, mostly players whenever likely to have as good of a chance again of reaching the final of the World Cup. The overall quality may not be there from England but their spirit is not in question. Head-to-head The last time England and Croatia were against each other was during World Cup 2010 qualification. England produced a 4-1 win and 5-1 win against the Croats. This will only be the eighth meeting between the two nations and England are 4-2 ahead with the one drawn match. Interestingly five of those previous seven meetings have seen at least four goals scored. Both teams have scored in five of the seven previous meetings as well.

Croatia v England winner odds*

England 11/8 Draw 21/10 Croatia 5/2 * (betting odds were taken from July 9, 2018, at 6:20 p.m.) Prediction: We completely see in this one needing more than regulation time to be settled. Croatia are technically the better of the two sides and will carry a threat, but they know that they will have to be cautious about the attacking pace that England can bring to the table. Another reason we don’t see this being settled straight away is because of the struggles Croatia have had in the knockout phase so we are simply sticking with an England To Qualify betting tip at 8/13 odds* (betting odds were taken from July 9, 2018, at 6:20 p.m.).

World Cup 2018 Quarter Finals Predictions & Betting Odds

World Cup 2018 Betting
It is now down to the final eight teams left standing at the 2018 World Cup and England are one of those eight. So the excitement is still high in what has been a thoroughly entertaining tournament so far, where the majority of the big guns going into the event have crumbled and fallen away. It is Brazil who are still leading the way as the outright favourites to get their hands on the title but as we have seen, pretty much anything can happen and there is bound to be more drama along the way. The route to the final - World Cup 2018 Infographic Here we take a look at World Cup 2018 quarter-finals betting odds.

Uruguay v France

France even money Draw 11/5 Uruguay 18/5 * (betting odds taken from July 4th, 2018 at 8:41 pm) This is the opening of the quarter-finals at Russia 2018 and it should be a good one as well. Uruguay went into the tournament as one of the strong dark horses and they have fought and battled their way through to what pretty much was an expected quarter-final berth. Uruguay got the better of Portugal in the last round thanks to some strong defence and opportunistic quality in breaking forward. They are going to need all of their defensive strengths again as they host France who showed just what an attacking force they can be as they powered their way past Argentina in the round of 16. Uruguay have Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani who between them have 98 international goals for their country. That is some strike partnership but Uruguay don’t really play on the front foot all that much so you can expect to see them sit back and is try and soak up some pressure. There is still a bit of an injury concern over Cavani, who got Uruguay’s two goals in their victory over Portugal. France have slowly found their feet at the tournament, getting better and better with each match. After finding themselves behind against Argentina they exploded into life to beat the South Americans 4-3. Both of these really have their strengths and it is worth looking over 2.5 goals for this game which is at 8/5 odds at bet365* (betting odds taken from July 4th, 2018 at 8:41 pm). Uruguay v France prediction We are siding with the French to get the job done but only by a narrow one-goal margin. Uruguay’s defence is going to take some breaking, but France looked far better in their game against Argentina more of a cohesive unit. They may just have the creativity in their ranks in the second half to punish some tiring Uruguay legs.

Brazil v Belgium

Brazil 23/20 Draw 12/5 Belgium 27/10 * (betting odds taken from July 4th, 2018 at 8:41 pm) This is one of the predicted quarter-final match ups that always seem to be on the cards before a single ball was kicked in anger at this tournament. It pits Brazil, the greatest nation in the history of soccer against Belgium side who are supposed to be one of the next big up and coming things. You have two sides here who are both on great undefeated streaks of form. Belgium are undefeated in 23 games now and they have collected a win in all four of their fixtures at Russia 2018. They had a real fight on their hands in the round of 16 though in having to battle back from being 2-0 down against Japan in what was supposed to be a very easy fixture for the Red Devils. But to their credit they had a plan B up their sleeve and they got through the task. Brazil are the very epitome of a cohesive team, something that Belgium haven’t looked much of at times. The Brazilians are on a long undefeated streak of form as well and since last September they have won 11 of their 14 games played, drawing the other three. Brazil had a bit of a slow start to the 2018 World Cup although they never looked in trouble at any point. They have won each of their last three games now at the tournament by a 2-0 scoreline but because Belgium do carry a big attacking threat especially on the break, much like Brazil themselves do, we are backing both teams to score in this fixture at 3/4 odds* (betting odds taken from July 4th, 2018 at 8:41 pm). That will be an achievement for Belgium because Brazil’s defence has been superb for a long time now and they have conceded in just one of their last nine games. Brazil v Belgium prediction We are going with the Selecao to collect the win in this one but only by a one-goal margin. You have two very similar setups here as both are so quick and lethal on the break. But if you look at the two sides Brazil are more of a team than the Belgians are. Belgium have looked very guilty of being a collection of individuals as opposed to a team. Also because of Brazil’s superior defence, we are backing the South Americans to edge this tie.

Sweden v England

England 10/11 Draw 12/5 Sweden 15/4 * (betting odds taken from July 4th, 2018 at 8:41 pm) What an afternoon this is going to be as the two European nations square off for a place in the semi-finals. Sweden have really flown under the radar through the tournament but they are producing some fine stuff as a team. They have proven to be more than the sum of their parts and while they lack the individual talent, they work so hard as a team for each other and they have a simple game plan. They stick to it and it works for them. That game plan is to sit deep and to fire long balls forward and try to use pace and physicality to unsettle teams. Sweden are lacking a bit in the goalscoring department in terms of quality and that is where England could have the upper hand. England’s World Cup has pretty much been reliant upon converting set pieces and that has been down to a lack of service to Harry Kane in open play. To be fair to Kane, the two players trusted most with serving him have been Raheem sterling and Dele Ali, neither of which have contributed a great deal other than effort. England buried a lot of ghosts in their penalty shootout win over Colombia in the last round and that will just have done their confidence even further good. This is a great opportunity for England to reach the semi finals for the first time since 1990, but they are going to be facing another well organised well drilled and tough physical side. It would not be a surprise if this game finished under 1.5 goals which is at 1/2 odds* (betting odds taken from July 4th, 2018 at 8:41 pm). Sweden v England prediction We can see England finding a way to get the win on the board in this one. Out of the two sides, they are the ones who are clearly going to be pushing forward more but are going to have to come up with much more creativity from open play and they showed against Colombia. England have more match winners in their ranks than the Swedes do, but we are looking at England taking their place in the semi-finals.

Russia v Croatia

Croatia 6/5 Draw 21/10 Russia 3/1 * (betting odds taken from July 4th, 2018 at 8:41 pm) All credit due to Russia after what they pulled off in the round of 16 match when they got past Spain. Russia were heavy underdogs for that game but they stuck to their plans of just parking the bus and they got the job done via a penalty shootout. It may not have been the prettiest are from them but it was tactics and it worked. Russia went into this tournament as the lowest ranked side taking part and there will not have been many people even within Russia who will have expected them to be playing in a quarter-final tie. The question is can they produce another upset and make it through to the final four? Croatia have been to the quarter-finals of the World Cup just once before which was back in 1998 when they finished third at the tournament. This is a very good crop of players that the Croats have at the moment but for a lot of them it will be their last chance at shooting for World Cup glory. Croatia have a fantastic midfield and they are strong at the back as well. Their one weak area perhaps is up front but they are likely to control most of this game and keep the Russians pressed back and so the Croats are likely to come up with chances enough to win this fixture. When it boils down to the individual quality that both teams can put out in their starting 11 is without question Croatia have edge.

Russia v Croatia prediction

As within the other quarter-final matchups, we see a tight game playing itself out here. Both of these went to extra time in the last round but of the two sides, Russia looked to have felt it more. Croatia just may have to be patient in this one to get the job done. We can see a draw/Croatia half-time/ full-time result for 4/1 odds* (betting odds taken from July 4th, 2018 at 8:41 pm) playing out as Croatia are likely to get more space the longer this game draws on with the Russians tiring.

World Cup 2018 outright winner odds*

Brazil 11/4 France 4/1 England 4/1 Croatia 6/1 Belgium 6/1 Uruguay 16/1 Russia 20/1 Sweden 25/1 * (betting odds taken from July 4th, 2018 at 8:41 pm)

World Cup group multiple and accumulator betting

World Cup 2018 Betting
We look at some of the World Cup group accas that can be placed for a big return We’ve gone through each of the 2018 World Cup groups and identified the best bets for the section, although there are also punting opportunities in the form of a multiple bet. The first port of call is to identify which teams look like bankers to win their groups and we think that the following fit the bill: Uruguay – Group A Spain – Group B France – Group C Brazil – Group E Germany – Group F You can get odds of around 6/1* (betting odds taken from bet365 at 3:28 a.m. on June 13th, 2018) that these five teams win their respective sections, with the countries likely to be motivated in a bid to avoid a difficult last sixteen clash which would be more likely if a side finishes runner-up. For those wanting to add Argentina (Group D) and Belgium (Group G) into the above, it would turn your acca into odds of 20/1* (betting odds taken from bet365 at 3:28 a.m. on June 13th, 2018), although seven selections in any multiple bet is always a risky business. If you want to place a World Cup group acca involving Spain, France, Brazil and Germany, then odds of 5/2* (betting odds taken from Paddy Power at 3:28 a.m. on June 13th, 2018) are generally available and these look like the four bankers although bear in mind that Spain wobbled at the 2010 World Cup and will face Portugal in their Group B opener.

To Quailfy Options

There is also the option to combine a number of World Cup teams to qualify for the last sixteen and we thought the following would provide some interest: Denmark – Group C Croatia – Group D Serbia – Group E Mexico – Group F England – Group G Senegal – Group H An accumulator on these teams to qualify can be backed at 30/1* (betting odds taken from bet365 at 3:28 a.m. on June 13th, 2018) with most bookmakers and this should provide excellent value for money and hopefully a decent return.

Failures can deliver a positive

Alternatively, you can try and profit from teams that you don’t think will fare particularly well. We thought we would try these countries to finish bottom of their section: Saudi Arabia – Group A Nigeria – Group D South Korea – Group F Panama – Group G Japan – Group H Interestingly, there are odds of over 20/1* (betting odds taken from bet365 at 3:28 a.m. on June 13th, 2018) available about the above teams finishing bottom and they might all be out of their depth against higher quality opponents.

World Cup 2018 outright winner odds at bet365*

Brazil 4/1 Germany 9/2 Spain 6/1 France 13/2 Argentina 9/1 Belgium 11/1 England 16/1 Portugal 25/1 Uruguay 28/1 Croatia 33/1 Columbia 40/1 Russia 40/1 Poland 66/1 Denmark 100/1 Mexico 100/1 Switzerland 125/1 Sweden 150/1 Peru 150/1 Bar 200/1 * (Betting Odds taken from June 11th, 2018 at 1.18 a.m.)

Dual Forceast Accas

Finally, if you’re feeling really adventurous, then you can bet on a number of teams in a Dual Forecast accumulator. This is great if you fancy two teams to qualify like Belgium and England from Group G. Here are some groups that we think could be worth pursuing: Group C: France and Denmark Group E: Brazil and Serbia Group F: Germany and Mexico Group G: Belgium and England You can get odds of 14/1* (betting odds taken from bet365 at 3:28 a.m. on June 13th, 2018) about all of the above teams going through from their qualifying section and it could be a bet that goes close!

England’s route to the World Cup Final 2018

Trippier - Lingard (England)
With Gareth Southgate selecting a fairly young England squad for the 2018 World Cup, optimism among English fans will once again be high. The Three Lions have had some miserable performances in recent major tournaments, and therefore they should be due to deliver a bit of cheer for their fans. Of course, things don’t always work out that way, but with England having a reasonable chance of making progress past the group stage, it is always worth looking ahead to see what they may crash into when it comes to the knockout stages of the tournament since it would be still a long route to the World Cup Final 2018 for England. Two years ago at Euro 2016 England were embarrassed by plucky Iceland in the knockout phase of the tournament. Out in Russia this summer they will have the chance to put all that behind them with a confident run at Russia 2018. What would be deemed as a success for England at this summer’s World Cup? That’s hard to gauge, but a realistic target has to be a quarter-final place. Can England get that far? Can they go even further than that? There we take a look at England’s World Cup group stage and the path that they could take in potentially reaching the final.

England group stage

England are not favourites to win their World Cup group stage. They are at 11/8 odds second favourites* (Betting Odds taken from Bet365 at 10:04 p.m. on May 28th, 2018) behind Belgium in that particular contest, but looking beyond the first stage it probably isn’t going to matter too much whether or not England actually manage to beat the Red Devils to the top spot in the group. England’s opening game at the World Cup is on
  • Monday, June 18 when they face Tunisia,
and then they will face minnows Panama who are making their World Cup debut, on June 24. Those are games are England should be winning, and the Three Lions are odds-on favourites in each of those matches. Their big test in the group stage is going to come in the final round of matches when they face fellow European nation Belgium. The Three Lions do have a fantastic head-to-head record against the Red Devils, but ahead of the big kick-off in the tournament (Betting Odds taken from Bet365 at 10:04 p.m. on May 28th, 2018) for that particular fixture. The thing is both England and Belgium could be sat on six points ahead of that clash so with qualification booked, it may not even be the full-on contest that could be. [bbutton bookmaker="bet365"]

How England's route to the World Cup Final 2018 continues

Once the group stage will have been successfully mastered the real thrill just begins. This is where the nerds step in who can tell the possible match constellations that will follow now. For this it is essential to know exactly the World Cup Fixtures and tournament table and also what is going on the other groups.

England round of 16

The Three Lions should make their way out of the group without too much fuss or other. If they do get the chance to rest key players against Belgium that probably wouldn’t be a bad thing. In the round of 16 England will play somebody from Group H which contains Poland, Senegal, Columbia and Japan. That Group H is such a hard group to read because Poland, Senegal and Columbia all fairly evenly matched. So is pretty much just potluck who there are going to get, and it is why it’s not particularly important for England to worry too much about winning their group. Looking at the Group H odds, Columbia are the favourites and if things go to form and follow the bookmaker odds where England finish second in their group, then it would most likely be Columbia that they faced in the round of 16. However, Columbia are not particularly in a good place at the moment and will come under pressure from both Poland and Senegal. Really whoever England go up against in that round, is likely to be a fairly even contest and that means England should be able to handle themselves and potentially move on through to the quarter-finals. (Betting Odds taken from Bet365 at 10:04 p.m. on May 28th, 2018) to get eliminated in the round of 16.

England Quarter Finals

England’s path to the World Cup final is going to get very tough at this stage more likely than not. The two big teams hovering around the bottom half of the draw are Brazil and Germany and if those two respectively win their groups and occupy two of the four quarter-final places in the bottom half of the draw then England are going to be up against a tough opponent in the quarter-final. Here’s how it could pan out. If England finishes second in their group then that would put them on a route to meet Germany in the quarter-final stage and if they were to win their group then it would likely mean that they have to try and deal with Brazil in a quarter-final tie. So going back to our early premise about it not being important whether England actually wins their group or not, this is the main reason why because either way they aren’t likely to avoid major hurdle in the quarter-finals. (Betting Odds taken from Bet365 at 10:04 p.m. on May 28th, 2018) to get eliminated in the quarter-finals.

England Semi Finals

Let’s imagine that fantastic scenario of England making it to the final four of Russia 2018. It is more than probable that they would have already come through a tough quarter-final match, and then expectations on them would be through the roof for having done that. If England are on the runners-up route from their group stage then it would potentially be Spain that they go up against in the semi finals. If they were to make their way through as group winners, which could mean potentially that they are the ones who knocked Brazil out of the tournament, then their semi-final opponents would most likely be, France. How well could England handle themselves against the Spaniards or French? While they would be heavy underdogs in either of those contests, the Three Lions would basically have nothing to lose at this stage because they would have already exceeded expectations. But what if? What if they could just go out one extra step? (Betting Odds taken from Bet365 at 10:04 p.m. on May 28th, 2018) to reach the World Cup final 2018.

England World Cup final

So after a long and exhausting and successful campaign through the knockout stages, England's route to the World Cup 2018 final could be accomplished. The most likely opponent there would be dependent on whether England did actually win the group right back at the first round. If they were to go through the route of runners-up, they would likely have beaten Germany in the quarter-finals, and then Spain in the semi finals and it would potentially put them up against Brazil final. If England won their group and made their way through the knockout stages, they would likely have the time Brazil in the quarter-finals and then France in the semi finals. So going that route then would leave their most likely opponent to be either Germany or Spain. England are 18/1 odds* (Betting Odds taken from Bet365 at 10:04 p.m. on May 28th, 2018) to win the World Cup outright.

England top goalscorer market

If England are going to have a successful campaign then they are going to need a goalscoring hero through. Who is that likely to be? Well, the answer looks to be pretty simple in its being (Betting Odds taken from Bet365 at 10:04 p.m. on May 28th, 2018) to be England’s top goalscorer at the World Cup 2018. England aren’t exactly blessed with big scoring threats in their squad. Gareth Southgate is taking
  • Marcus Rashford (9/1),
  • Raheem Sterling (6/1),
  • Jamie Vardy (8/1) and
  • Danny Welbeck*
(Betting Odds taken from Bet365 at 10:04 p.m. on May 28th, 2018) as the backups to Kane. Sterling did have a fantastic season with Manchester City but he, along with any input from Marcus Rashford is going to be seen as a backup to supporting Kane. Jamie Vardy does look great option to have to come off the bench if needed, his pace and finishing could really trouble defences in the latter stages of games. But the Leicester man or anyone else for that matter in the England squad is likely to beat Kane in the quest to be England’s top World Cup goalscorer in the summer.

Top England scorer betting and other England specials

World Cup 2018 Betting
We look ahead to the 2018 World Cup and look to see which England player will score the most goals Gareth Southgate has named his England team and it appears likely that the Three Lions will play at least four games at the 2018 World Cup considering they have Tunisia and Panama in their group.

Who top scores for the Three Lions?

You can find good England special markets at Bet365 and that includes top England scorer where we have an obvious favourite at the top of the betting in Harry Kane. Kane is currently trading at evens with bet365* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018) to score the most goals for England, with the Tottenham forward likely to be on penalties although some will feel that price is too short about a player likely to be heavily marked. Raheem Sterling comes into the World Cup after a fine title-winning campaign with Manchester City and he can be backed at 6/1 odds* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018) to lead the England scoring charts, while Dele Alli is the same price and will look to get in advanced positions.

Bench Back Up Options

Jamie Vardy and Marcus Rashford look likely to be on the bench for the World Cup opener against Tunisia, although the pair are both 10/1 and 8/1 respectively* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018) if you fancy them to notch the most for England this summer, with Danny Welbeck available at odds of 16/1* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018). We’ve seen England experience plenty of big tournament heartache over the past decades and they have often exited after losing a penalty shoot-out, with bet365 offering 5/1* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018)  that Gareth Southgate’s team are beaten on spot kicks.

Stage of Elimination

England fans can also bet on the stage of the tournament that their team will reach, with bet365 anticipating that the team will reach either the last sixteen or last eight of the tournament. Both of these outcomes are trading at 11/5* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018), while an unthinkable group stage exit can be backed at 5/1* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018) should you think that England will finish third or fourth in their particular group. If you think England can excel in Russia, then odds of 5/1* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018) are available that the Three Lions are beaten in the semi-finals, while a final defeat is 10/1* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018) and a World Cup triumph can be backed at 16/1* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018) for the optimistic fans amongst us.

World Cup 2018 outright winner odds at bet365*

Brazil 4/1 Germany 9/2 Spain 6/1 France 13/2 Argentina 9/1 Belgium 11/1 England 16/1 Portugal 25/1 Uruguay 28/1 Croatia 33/1 Columbia 40/1 Russia 40/1 Poland 66/1 Denmark 100/1 Mexico 100/1 Switzerland 125/1 Sweden 150/1 Peru 150/1 Bar 200/1 * (Betting Odds taken from June 11th, 2018 at 1.18 a.m.) Indeed, you can bet on the Stage of Elimination when it comes to any team, with Germany actually the shortest priced to go out at the last sixteen stage, while you can get 9/2* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018) that they win the tournament and the same price is available that they lose in the last four. Serbia are a good bet to endure a last sixteen defeat at 2/1* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018), while Mexico are famous for departing the competition at this stage is also a 2/1 poke* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018). Belgium look a good bet at 12/5* (betting odds taken at 3:34 a.m. on June 10th, 2018) to go out in the last eight, while Denmark are 13/8 to go out in the last sixteen and are likely to face Argentina or Croatia should they make it to that stage.

Betvictor Million Pound Bet World Cup Promotion

Free Bets & Promotions
Operator BetVictor are running a leaderboard-based World Cup 2018 promotion where for a single ÂŁ1 stake on the tournament, you could win up to ÂŁ1,000,000. It is a promotion in which the goal is to try and land a winning bet at the biggest odds of all qualifying bets placed on the World Cup 2018.

How it Works

The BetVictor Million Pound Bet offer is a leaderboard competition based on who can create the winning World Cup bet at the biggest odds. A qualifying bet for the promotion is a Single Bet or an each-way bet of at least the Minimum Stake of ÂŁ1 on a Qualifying Market, using real cash and/or bonus funds. The minimum stake is ÂŁ1. To win the Overall Competition, a customer must place the Winning Bet with the Biggest Odds of all Qualifying Bets placed on the World Cup 2018. The winner(s) will be the ones who finish top of the leaderboard once the 2018 World Cup Final has ended. There are two competitions running side by side, one Overall and one Daily. A qualifying market for the promotion is deemed to be any betting market made available on the Betvictor Website, relating to the World Cup, but excluding any Enhanced Prices for the Overall Competition. The prize available for winning the Overall Competition is one million pounds Sterling. For the Daily Competition a qualifying market is any betting market listed within the main set of pre-match and in-play markets relating to a Fixture taking place on a specific Matchday. The prize available each Matchday for winning a Daily Competition is five thousand pounds Sterling. Prize money will be shared if there is more than one winner. Customers must also have made a minimum deposit of ÂŁ5 on the account. There is an opt out option if you do not wish to take part, which can be done by emailing Terms and Conditions apply 18+ Please Gamble Responsibly

Terms and Conditions

TERMS APPLYING TO MILLION POUND BET COMPETITION These Terms are the terms on which the Competitions (as defined below) are offered. By placing a Qualifying Bet (as defined below) and entering the Competitions, each Customer accepts these Terms. 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The definition of Website includes mobile web and the BetVictor app, iOS and Android applications; Winning Bet A Qualifying Bet placed by a Customer, the Outcome of which is positive and therefore returns a value greater than the original bet stake; World Cup The FIFA Football World Cup 2018, which is due to be played in Russia between 14 June 2018 and 15 July 2018; and World Cup Final The last Fixture of the World Cup, in which the winner of the World Cup is established. COMPETITIONS During the World Cup, BetVictor will operate an overall competition (also known as “The Million Pound Bet”) (the “Overall Competition”) and, on each Matchday of the World Cup, a daily competition (each a “Daily Competition”). The Overall Competition To win the Overall Competition, a Customer must place the Winning Bet with the Biggest Odds of all Qualifying Bets placed on the World Cup. 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All other currencies will be calculated at current exchange rates Any Customer whose account is closed, or is blocked from accessing the casino, at the time the Casino Bonus is credited will not be eligible to receive the Casino Bonus. BetVictor reserves the right to remove the Casino Bonus from a winning Customer together with any winnings derived from it BetVictor believes that a Customer has, or is attempting to, abuse the Casino Bonus. Low risk betting (i.e. betting on red/black, evens/odds, 1-18/19-36 or covering over twenty (20) numbers on a spin (including straight up, splits, streets, corners, baskets, six-lines, dozens, columns, red/black, evens/odds, 1-18/19-36 and section/neighbour bets)) will result in the Casino Bonus, together with any winnings derived from it being removed from the Customer’s account. A Customer is permitted to withdraw its real cash balance at any time, without it affecting the qualification, award, prize or wagering for this Casino Bonus. 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Who will be the best European team at the World Cup 2018?

World Cup 2018 Betting
There are 14 UEFA teams at the 2018 World Cup including reigning world champions Germany There are tons of markets for the 2018 World Cup and the bookmakers have focused on the European teams by offering customers the chance to bet on which UEFA side will go the furthest this summer?

European Finalist

That means you can potentially back a team on this market and profit if they make the semi-finals providing there are two non-European teams lining up in the World Cup final. You could also regard this betting market as “Betting without Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay”, with the other teams in the competition unlikely to be at the business end of the World Cup unless we get a real shock.

Top European Team Odds*

Germany 11/4 France 7/2 Spain 9/2 Belgium 8/1 England 10/1 Portugal 14/1 Croatia 25/1 Poland 25/1 Russia 25/1 Switzerland 50/1 Denmark 50/1 Sweden 66/1 Serbia 80/1 Iceland 100/1 * (betting odds taken at 4:17 a.m, on June 11th, 2018)

The favourites

Germany, Spain, France and Belgium form an orderly queue at the head of the market, with these teams trading at single figures at bet365 and the Germany top of the pile at 11/4 odds* (betting odds taken at 4:17 a.m, on June 11th, 2018). Five years ago, it would have been strange to see the Belgians in this company and one wonders if they have the pedigree to win a World Cup despite a glittering array of stars who all operate for a top-notch domestic club. The other trio are far more established although we would question why France are generally trading so short in every market considering that Didier Deschamps doesn’t seem to know his best team despite quality in the ranks.

The each-way bets

We are amazed to see England next on the list at 11.00 odds* (betting odds taken at 4:17 a.m, on June 11th, 2018), with the Three Lions seriously short of World Cup experience after bailing out at the group stage in 2014 and they didn’t fare much better in 2016 at the Euros. Portugal and Russia are also passed over for similar reasons and the hosts will hope they benefit from some favourable refereeing decisions simply to go out of Group A and into the last sixteen. However, there is no way that Croatia and Poland should be trading at 26.00* (betting odds taken at 4:17 a.m, on June 11th, 2018) considering they are both rugged teams with clear opportunities to make the knockout stage of the competition. The Croatians in particularly will be confident of finishing ahead of Argentina and winning their group would see their odds on Top European team be slashed by the bookies.

World Cup 2018 outright winner odds at bet365*

Brazil 4/1 Germany 9/2 Spain 6/1 France 13/2 Argentina 9/1 Belgium 11/1 England 16/1 Portugal 25/1 Uruguay 28/1 Croatia 33/1 Columbia 40/1 Russia 40/1 Poland 66/1 Denmark 100/1 Mexico 100/1 Switzerland 125/1 Sweden 150/1 Peru 150/1 Bar 200/1 * (Betting Odds taken from June 11th, 2018 at 1.18 a.m.)

The outsiders

Trading at odds of 51.00 or bigger* (betting odds taken at 4:17 a.m, on June 11th, 2018) are Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark, Serbia and Iceland, with three of these five teams having qualified through the UEFA play-offs. Denmark were probably the most impressive qualifiers, with the Danes winning 5-1 on aggregate over Republic of Ireland although they are probably over-reliant on the trickery and goals of Christian Eriksen. Similarly, Sweden will hope for some midfield magic from Emil Forsberg and the Leipzig midfielder could help them finish ahead of Mexico at the group stage although they are almost destined to finish behind Germany. Sweden are 11/8 odds at bet365 to qualify* (betting odds taken at 4:17 a.m, on June 11th, 2018). The Swiss, Serbians and Icelanders will all have a chance of making the last sixteen but it’s hard to see them having the requisite quality to challenge at the business end of the tournament.

World Cup 2018 Injury News and Betting Odds

World Cup 2018 Betting
The build up to the 2018 World Cup raised an important question when it comes to betting opportunities on the tournament. Back in March Brazil’s superstar Neymar a suffered broken foot and there were doubts about his participation in the 2018 World Cup. While it looks as if he is going to make it to play a fairly full role in the tournament, the scenario raised an interesting point. If you had been thinking about backing Brazil to win the 2018 World Cup by putting a stake towards them in the outright winner market, would you have been so confident in doing so if Neymar had not have recovered in time? It is one of those factors that is worth weighing up when it comes to football betting. Big stars have big impacts and if the team has been shed of its best players then their chances of success are going to be altered.

Impact of teams missing star players

Can you imagine England going to the World Cup without Harry Kane? Would Belgium be an appealing dark horse if both Kevin de Bruyne and Eden Hazard were both missing from the squad? What if key men from Germany’s backline or those influential ball holders in the middle of Spain’s midfield would fail to make it to the party? How much would things like this influence your betting decisions on who would win World Cup 2018? And of course, goes beyond just the outright winner market at the 2018 World Cup, injuries and suspensions have a more immediate impact in match betting. The 2014 runners-up Argentina will get a tough game against Croatia at the 2018 World Cup, and imagine if Lionel Messi wasn’t fit for that crucial game, where would that leave your betting on the match outright? There are so many factors to take into consideration for your 2018 World Cup betting from current form, to style of play, to strength in depth of the substitution factors in games, to the tactical prowess of the head coaches. One thing that does get overlooked when looking at match betting for the 2018 World Cup and even the outright winner market, and that is injuries and suspensions.

World Cup 2018 Injuries and Suspensions

The task of keeping up with the entire list of players who are either definitely sidelined or in doubt for any upcoming matches can be hard to keep track of. Fortunately, there is a solution at your fingertips as you can visit our World Cup injuries and suspension page and get a quick in-depth overview of important absentees for each team participating at the 2018 World Cup, either through suspension or injury. Our page lists which players are out, the reason why, including the type of injury that has been suffered, when the injury or suspension was picked up and when they are expected return to action. If someone has received a knock, for example, in a game during the tournament they may just be day-to-day and it wouldn’t really affect your betting odds. However if say France has seen Paul Pogba picked up a red card and had Antoine Griezmann injured on top, that would naturally impact their chances and odds.

Stay Informed

Checking out our list of injuries and suspensions for the 2018 World Cup only takes a quick minute but it is valuable information that you need on your side to be able to make the most informed betting decisions for the 2018 World Cup action that you can.

The best match bets of the World Cup group stage

World Cup 2018 Betting
We look at the first round of World Cup group fixtures and seek out the best possible value. The 2018 World Cup kicks off on Thursday 14 June, with Russia clashing with Saudi Arabia and we’re casting our eye over the first round of group games to hunt out the best value. The Russians are a terrible price to win this curtain-raiser considering they have a low FIFA ranking, although there are some better odds over the coming days should you want to strike some bets. URUGUAY look a decent shout at 4/7 odds with bet365* (betting odds taken on June 5th, 2018 at 2:19 a.m.) for the other Group A opener if the South American side can tame Mohamed Salah and his Egyptian teammates. La Celeste have * (betting odds taken on June 5th, 2018 at 2:19 a.m.) in attack and will be out to make this a successful tournament in an easy section. The Uruguayans * (betting odds taken on June 5th, 2018 at 2:19 a.m.)in the CONMEBOL qualifying section and Oscar Tabarez has a wealth of experience within the ranks, while there are* (betting odds taken on June 5th, 2018 at 2:19 a.m.)coming through. * (betting odds taken on June 5th, 2018 at 2:19 a.m.) on 15 June when they face Portugal in their Group B opener. While the European champions will play defensively, the* (betting odds taken on June 5th, 2018 at 2:19 a.m.) to create chances and get an early three points on the board. An eye-catching * (betting odds taken on June 5th, 2018 at 2:19 a.m.) suggests that La Roja could be the team to beat this summer and there’s a bunch of midfield playmakers who can keep the ball and make life difficult. ICELAND are 8/1 odds at bet365* (betting odds taken on June 5th, 2018 at 2:19 a.m.) to beat Argentina in their Group D opener, with the European side looking to nullify Lionel Messi and the other dangerous forwards, with a potential shock on the cards for the European team. The Icelanders play with no fear and will consider the opener as the best time to be facing La Albiceleste who have well-documented defensive problems. CROATIA are a 17/20 poke with bet365* (betting odds taken on June 5th, 2018 at 2:19 a.m.) to beat Nigeria and there could be a gulf in class between the two teams, with the former likely to dominate the ball in midfield and it could see them come through comfortably. Luka Modric and Ivan Rakitic are particularly adept at controlling the game and their experiences for Real Madrid and Barcelona respectively provide a big advantage. SERBIA also look a big shout to overcome Costa Rica in the Group E curtain-raiser, with the Serbs likely to have a big following in Russia and they have an experienced spine of players which can help them enjoy a winning start. World Cup 2018 Outright Winner Odds*
  • Brazil 4/1
  • Germany 9/2
  • Spain 6/1
  • France 13/2
  • Argentina 9/1
  • Belgium 11/1
  • England 16/1
  • Portugal 25/1
  • Uruguay 28/1
  • Croatia 33/1
  • Colombia 40/1
  • Russia 40/1
  • Poland 66/1
  • Switzerland 100/1
  • Denmark 100/1
  • Mexico 100/1
  • Sweden 150/1
  • Bar 200/1
* (Betting Odds taken at 4:07 p.m. on June 4th, 2018)

World Cup 2018 Top Scorer predictions & betting odds

Giroud - Griezmann (France)
There are absolute legends who have walked away with the title of World Cup top goalscorer during their respective careers. Think of Brazil’s Ronaldo who netted eight goals in the 2002 campaign, Germany’s Gerd Muller and his 10 goal haul in the 1970 edition. Other greats of the game to have won the accolade include Gary Lineker, Paolo Rossi, Eusabio, Thomas Muller and record holder (most goals in a single tournament) Just Fontaine who scored 13 goals in the 1958 World Cup in Sweden for France. The all-time leading goal scorer at the World Cup is Germany’s Miroslav Klose. At the 2014 World Cup, he got a goal group stage against Ghana and then netted one in Germany’s epic 7-1 semi-final win over Brazil. Those were his 15th and 16th goals in World Cup history, taking him past Ronaldo’s tally of fifteen which had been standing since 2006.

2018 World Cup top goalscorer odds*

Lionel Messi 9/1, Neymar 10/1, Antoine Greizmann 12/1, Cristiano Ronaldo 14/1, Gabriel Jesus 16/1, Karry Kane 16/1, Timo Werner 16/1, Romelu Lukaku 18/2, Diego Costa 25/1, Luis Suarez 25/1, Edinson Cavani 25/1, Robert Lewandowski 33/1, Sergio Aguero 33/1, Isco 33/1, Kylian Mbappe 33/1, Gonazlo Higuain 33/1, Thomas Muller 33/1, Olivier Giroud 40/1, Mo Salah 40/1, Paulo Dybala 40/1, Eden Hazard 50/1* (betting odds taken on May 26th, 2018 at 00:16 a.m.) [bbutton bookmaker="bet365"] So who will be getting their hands on the individual award for being the top goal scorer at World Cup 2018 in Russia? Some of the game's modern greats will be showing up like Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Antoine Griezmann and Robert Lewandowski. Four years ago in Brazil, it was Colombia's James Rodriguez who took the Golden Boot with six goals in five games. He was a surprise winner of the personal award because not many punters would have picked him out of the field prior to the tournament. But he produced some stunning displays in the group stage and while Colombia didn’t get past the quarter-finals (where they lost it to Brazil), no one, in the end, could catch Rodriguez. Argentina is Lionel Messi is the 9/1 odds outright favourite* (betting odds taken on May 26th, 2018 at 00:16 a.m.) in the World Cup 2018 top scorer market and he had a great season in front of goal with Barcelona. Messi was the top scorer this season in all of Europe's top five leagues with 34 goals to land himself the European Golden Shoe. However, Argentina were poor in front of goal through qualification campaign as they were the lowest scorers of five qualified nations from the CONMBEBOL zone. Argentina produced just the 19 goals in their 18 qualification matches with 12 of those games all finishing under 2.5 goals. Messi got seven of their qualification goals are no other player made it past two for them. Messi has five World Cup goals from 14 previous World Cup matches.

Will Neymar be fit enough to be in contention?

Brazilian superstar Neymar is right there at the head of the market as well, despite the fact that he hasn’t played since March this year. Neymar had surgery on a broken metatarsal and was reportedly given three months recovery time. So Neymar’s fitness and match sharpness is fully in doubt for the World Cup 2018, but just because of his incredible strike record for Brazil, it would be no surprise to see him rushed back to full fitness. At the time of writing, Neymar had produced 53 goals in 83 international appearances. He pretty much does carry the hopes of Brazil on his shoulders. The thing about Neymar is if he is fit then has a very strong creative team around him, more so than four years ago and he would get a hatful of chances to finish as the top goalscorer at the tournament. But how sharp will he really be? The big concern about him is the fact that he will be lacking match sharpness having missed the end of the domestic season. So at the 10/1 odds price* (betting odds taken on May 26th, 2018 at 00:16 a.m.) how much are punters going to trust that he can deliver in Russia 2018? If he isn’t fit and ready to go them Brazil’s hopes would switch over to Manchester City's young Gabriel Jesus who is at 16/1 odds* (betting odds taken on May 26th, 2018 at 00:16 a.m.) to win outright. Looking at some of the other front-runners World Cup top goalscorer betting market you have Cristiano Ronaldo 14/1 odds* (betting odds taken on May 26th, 2018 at 00:16 a.m.), but with Portugal albeit the reigning European champions, you have a side who are not naturally explosive in front of goal. Ronaldo will get plenty of pop shots at goal from set pieces and because Portugal just lack in the goal scoring department as a whole he is going to carry the can when it comes to providing the goals for their World Cup campaign. Portugal have a tough run ahead of them at the World Cup and it is highly unlikely that they will go deep enough to really give Ronaldo a shot at winning the individual award.

Recent Top Goalscorer History

Four of the last five winners of the World Cup Golden Boot played at least six games each in the tournament. One exception there is the last winner James Rodriguez who got his sixth goal haul in just five games. So the natural trend is that you are looking for a player from a team who is at least going to make the final four. With France a strong contender for the 2018 World Cup then Antoine Griezmann will come into the picture. After a bit of a slow start to the season, he exploded into life in 2018 for club Atletico Madrid and he is going to lead the front line for the French at the World Cup. He is their go-to man and at 12/1 odds at bet365* (betting odds taken on May 26th, 2018 at 00:16 a.m.) in the World Cup 2018 top goalscorer market, Griezmann will have plenty of appeal for punters. He is wonderful in the box, superb in one-on-one situations and he was the top goalscorer at Euro 2016 with six goals for his country, and he also finished as the player tournament. The more that he is in the game at Russia 2018 the stronger France’s chances of going all the way to win their second World Cup will be. England’s Harry Kane was in spectacular form once again for Tottenham and the Three Lions during the course of the season. While no doubt he is one of the top goalscorer talents in the world punters would have to ask themselves whether or not England are good enough to go deep enough into the tournament to give Kane the games he would need to get the goals to finish as top goalscorer? England don't have one of the toughest of groups so he could get his eye in early on, but the potential lack of games for him compared to the games that Neymar and Jesus could potentially get for Brazil, is going to be vastly different. The other leading contenders in the World Cup top goalscorer market include Germany’s young scoring sensation Timo Werner who has all of the ability in the world to upstage his experienced counterpart, Thomas Muller. Belgium's hopes will be resting on the shoulders of Manchester United’s Romelu Lukaku, while Uruguay has the double threat of Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani. Poland’s Robert Lewandowski is one of the greatest finishers in the game but he is in the same boat as England’s Harry Kane really with the lack of games that Poland are likely to get, not giving him another chance to be the top goalscorer at Russia 2018.


prediction group win world cup 2018Of the front-runners France’s Antoine Griezmann looks to be the good value option to roll with ahead of the tournament. For starters, France have a relatively easy group to get through which will boost Griezman’s chances of finishing as top goalscorer and frankly with Argentina struggling going form, injury doubts over Neymar and Cristiano Ronaldo, Harry Kane and Robert Lewandowski not likely to get enough games, then Griezmann at 12/1 odds with bet365* (betting odds taken on May 26th, 2018 at 00:16 a.m.) is our World Cup top goalscorer tip.  

World Cup 2018 Dark Horses predictions & betting odds

Cavani (Uruguay)
It is always nice thinking about a dark horse coming through the field at the World Cup and surprising everybody by taking the title. Is it likely to happen? The answer in terms of excitement sadly is no, and you can look back through the history of the World Cup to find confirmation of that as well. There have been 20 previous editions of the World Cup and only 8 different nations have gotten their hands on the title. So with the elite in the world including Brazil, Germany, France and Spain, it is a really tough thing for anybody to come through the field and pull off a shock. It’s not even that, it's uncommon for a major underdog to even get themselves into the final four at the tournament. 2002 really was a big exception there with both Turkey and South Korea going head-to-head in the third-place play-off. But commonly you only find the strong nations making their way through to the latter stages of the tournament and that’s natural and the bookmaker odds will reflect that. So how do you go about betting on a dark horse at the World Cup 2018? Is there any point in doing so? The answer to that is yes but it just requires are a bit of thinking outside the box and avoiding throwing money at big underdogs to go out and win the event. You will be better serve shopping around alternative markets to try and find value in dark horses producing something a little bit special at the tournament and adding that extra layer of excitement as well.

Group winners and to qualify

A couple of the markets are looking for backing a dark horse is in the first round of the group stage. This is where you can back a team who have a one in four chance of finishing top of their respective group, to deliver for you. Naturally, you are going to have less of a chance of pulling this off if you’re backing somebody like Serbia to beat Brazil to the top spot in Group E or South Korea to top Group F ahead of Germany. You want to look in the groups where things are a little bit more competitive and the little more wide open. The two groups which jump out of all that is Group A which contains Russia, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Uruguay, and then there is Group H which contains Poland, Senegal, Columbia and Japan. If you look at Group A, there Uruguay are a great 11/10 odds-on price* (betting odds taken at 1:07 a.m. on May 26th, 2018) to win group ahead of the host nation Russia, and therefore Uruguay who are a dark horse in the tournament outright market, can actually be seen great value for you early on. Because Russia been so poor several years now, it could be also a good opportunity to try and oppose them with the exciting Egypt who will be led by Liverpool’s Mo Salah, to even beat the host nation out into a qualifying spot. Egypt are 7/5 odds at bet365 to qualify* (betting odds taken at 1:07 a.m. on May 26th, 2018) from the group and that would be an example of a dark horse coming through and delivering something unexpected without touching the big overall outright winner of the World Cup market. Group H is just so wide-open it’s a little hard to read actually. African representatives Senegal has a decent quality running through their squad and includes players from the English Premier League, while Colombia proved themselves very strong four years ago and then there is Poland with the scoring threat of Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski. Columbia are actually the favourites to win group 8/5 odds with bet365* (betting odds taken at 1:07 a.m. on May 26th, 2018), but they looked pretty ropey through qualification and haven’t been carrying great form. The South Americans just don’t look as good as they were four years ago. So it could be worth opposing them with Poland who have been pretty consistent and solid over the last few years, to beat them to top spot at 15/8 odds* (betting odds taken at 1:07 a.m. on May 26th, 2018).

2018 World Cup Outright Winner Odds

Brazil 4/1, Germany 9/2, Spain 6/1, France 13/2, Argentina 9/1, Belgium 11/1, England 18/1, Portugal 25/1, Uruguay 33/1, Croatia 33/1, Colombia 40/1, Russia 40/1, Poland 50/1, Denmark 100/1, Mexico 100/1, Switzerland 100/1, bar 150/1* (betting odds taken at 4:25 p.m. on May 25, 2018) [bbutton bookmaker="bet365"]

Outright winner dark horse

So you can see you find value on dark horses around the tournament without touching the outright winner market. With that having been said if you did want to go for an underdog in the main market then the way to do that would be going to the each-way option. You look at the outright winner market for the World Cup 2018 and naturally, at the top, you have Brazil, Germany, Spain, France and Argentina all under double figures. So big one of those doesn’t really qualify as being a dark horse. For dark horse betting in the outright winner market, you are going to be looking at those nations with a bit of meat on the bone when it comes to planning each way odds. Here, for example, you can find England at 18/1 odds* (betting odds taken at 1:07 a.m. on May 26th, 2018), current reigning European champions Portugal at 25/1 odds * (betting odds taken at 1:07 a.m. on May 26th, 2018) and Uruguay who boast the superb attacking threat of Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani along with a pretty rugged defence at 33/1 odds* (betting odds taken at 1:07 a.m. on May 26th, 2018). Really though the dark horse that will probably appeal to most punters will be Belgium whose price has been shortening since the end of the domestic season around Europe. The Red Devils are now 11/1 odds* (betting odds taken at 1:07 a.m. on May 26th, 2018) to get their hands on the title and that is because they boast world-class talents like Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku.

Team specials

You can find value in World Cup 2018 dark horses just by looking at team specials as well. Now one prime area in which to do this will be the stage of elimination. Let’s take England’s campaign for example. While there is the usual amount of over-hyped expectancy about how the Three Lions will do, realistically they aren’t going to win World Cup this year and once again that’s reflected in the odds at bookmakers have placed on them. But given the group stage draw that they have received, you would expect the Three Lions to be in the knockout stages of the tournament. This is where you bust out your World Cup chart and try and figure out the most likely opponents going through the rounds. They will, of course, be a tight tussle with Belgium in the group stage and if you go with the bookmakers who have the Three Lions as second favourites to win the group, if they do end up as runners-up then it would be in all European tie against Poland in the round of 16. Whatever happens really though to England in terms of finishing place they will more likely than not going be facing either Poland, Senegal or Colombia in the first knockout round. If you can push them past that, then that’s where things may well hit a brick wall for Gareth Southgate. If England were to win their group they would be on a collision course with Brazil in the quarter-finals, and if they get through in second place they will be on a collision course with Germany in the quarter-finals instead. So realistically even though England aren’t likely going to be winning the World Cup this year you can project them for a quarter-final stage of elimination at 11/4 odds with bet365* (betting odds taken at 1:07 a.m. on May 26th, 2018). Then obviously at your discretion if you fancy the English dark horses to make it further you would find even bigger prices.

Other World Cup Dark Horse Opens

There are a lot of different ways to oppose the favourites in World Cup 2018 betting markets. You may just have to look outside of the box and not just focus on the outright winner market. Maybe  you fancy Luis Suarez to outscore his teamate Edison Cavani at the tournament. Suarez is second-favourite so the underdog. Maybe it's Spain's Diego Costa in the Golden Boot race. Maybe you fancy Croatia being a quarter finalist in the stage of elimination. Maybe you do fancy the large-odds on England reaching the final.

Summary and predictions

prediction group win world cup 2018So seeing you don’t just have to back a dark horse in the outrighty winner market there are other ways to get behind teams to and individual players to pull out surprises throughout the course of the tournament. It's best done before it gets down to the business end of things where only the stronger teams remain. The dark horse selections that we can see in the tournament are Uruguay charting a course through to the quarter-finals, Croatia potentially beating Argentina to top spot in Group D and Senegal causing an upset in Group H by beating Columbia to qualification. As for the dark horse chances of England, our tip is a quarter-final exit.