2018 FIFA World Cup – Group F Preview

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The 2018 FIFA World Cup will take place in Russia starting from June 14th, 2018, so check out our preview for all four national teams who’ll play in the Group F – Germany, Mexico, Sweden, and South Korea, along with the latest odds on BetDSI Sportsbook. The first game is set for June 17th, 2018, when the defending champions Germany faces Mexico at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, so here is all you need to know about the Group F at the upcoming 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

GERMANY

Germany had a terrific campaign back in 2014, winning a FIFA World Cup Trophy in a strong fashion, while they were excellent in the qualifying round for the upcoming tournament, recording ten wins in ten games with a 43:4 goal difference. The defending champions are coming to Russia as +450 favorites to beat the 2018 FIFA World Cup, and only Brazil is considered as a bigger contender by the bookies who are pretty sure we’ll see Germany in the Quarter-Finals, setting the market at -200. The price on Germany to make it to the last four is at +100, while the market on eventual failure after the group stage is set at +700.

Die Mannschaft is a well-gelled machine that grinds its’ opponents with a high tempo and superb pressure on the ball, while when having a possession of the ball, their passing game looks impressive, as they somehow combine short-passing style with a more simple and direct approach. The head coach Joachim Low prefers a 4-5-1 formation, but he likes to mix things, and his system is quite fluid with plenty of position changes during a game. He insists on an offensive approach, so the bettors should see some goals in Germany’s matches, especially against physically weaker sides such as South Korea or Mexico.

The scorer of 10 World Cup goals thus far Thomas Muller (90 caps, 38 goals) will lead this Germany team along with the playmaker Toni Kroos (82 caps, 12 goals), but there are also some other guys who can step up and make a huge impact at the 2018 World Cup, such as Leroy Sane (11 caps) who had a great season with Manchester City or Marco Reus (29 caps, 9 goals) who missed the previous tournament due to injury problems. The Golden Glove winner from Brazil 2014 Manuel Neuer (74 caps) is in the preliminary squad, and it looks like he could be in the plane for Russia, despite he’s still recovering from a foot injury. Neuer’s presence at the World Cup would be a huge boost for defending champions who also have a fantastic keeper in Barcelona’s Marc-Andre ter Stegen (19 caps).

Manager: Joachim Low

Star Player: Thomas Muller

One to Watch: Leroy Sane

Formation: 4-5-1

Odds: +450

Prediction: Final

 

MEXICO

El Tri will play in their seventh consecutive World Cup in Russia, and they’ve managed to qualify for the knockout phase on previous six occasions, interestingly, without making it through to the last eight, not even once. It could be a huge psychological problem for Mexicans who will have a tough task in the Group F alongside Germany, Sweden, and South Korea, while the bookmakers favor them at +110 to reach the Round of 16 once more. Mexico starts the campaign against mighty Germany where the market on both teams to score is set at +105, while the bettors should know these two sides met each other last year in the FIFA Confederations Cup Semi-Final when Germany won easily 4-1.

The top goalscorer in Mexico’s history Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez (100 caps, 49 goals) will lead this El Tri side along with an experienced captain Andres Guardado (144 caps, 25 goals) who’ll orchestrate the play from midfield. At the back, Hector Moreno (91 caps, 3 goals) will hold things, although Mexico’s defensive line is considered as the weakest link in this team. The talented 22-year old forward Hirving Lozano (26 caps, 7 goals) had a great season with PSV, and he could be El Tri’s secret weapon at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Mexico is a quite pacey team, mostly playing in a 4-3-3 formation, but they are also capable of playing with three men at the back if necessary. With the ball on their feet, Mexicans prefer a short-passing style of play, trying to find some room behind opponent’s defense, while Javier Hernandez is a pure fox in the box who knows how to take advantage of his chances. However, Mexico could have problems with physically strong teams such as Germany or Sweden, especially in defensive set pieces situations, so the bettors can expect to see some goals in Mexico’s net.

Manager: Juan Carlos Osorio

Star Player: Javier Hernandez

One to Watch: Hirving Lozano

Formation: 4-3-3

Odds: +10000

Prediction: Round of 16

 

SWEDEN

Sweden has made a huge upset in the European qualifying playoff, deservedly beating Italy 1-0 on aggregate to reach the 2018 FIFA World Cup after some brilliant defensive performance in both legs of the matchup. The Blue-Yellow is coming to Russia as -163 favorites to finish the journey in the group stage, while the price on Sweden to qualify for the second round is set at +125. The bookies are pretty skeptical about Blue-Yellow’s odds at the 2018 World Cup, setting the market on Sweden to reach the Quarter-Finals at +700.

After a lot of talking in the last couple of months about Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s eventual return to the national team, now we are sure that Sweden’s top goalscorer in the history with 62 goals in 116 caps won’t be in the plane for Russia, so the 31-year old striker Marcus Berg (55 caps, 18 goals) will lead the frontline along with his coeval Ola Toivonen (57 caps, 13 goals). The biggest star of this Sweden team is certainly a 26-year old midfielder Emil Forsberg (34 caps, 6 goals) who’ll playmaking the side, whilst the captain Andreas Granqvist (70 caps, 6 goals) should orchestrate the defense.

Sweden is a well-organized team with a remarkable team defense, typically for Scandinavian sides, but they are also technically gifted players who know to play with the ball on their feet. However, they mostly rely on quick counter-attacks, insisting on a direct-passing style which really worked for Sweden in the qualifiers. They are a physically very strong team, excellent in aerial duels, while offensive set pieces situations are always their chances to score goals. The bettors should expect a tight and cautious approach from Blue-Yellow, as it seems we’ll not see a bunch of goals in their matches.

Manager: Janne Andersson

Star Player: Emil Forsberg

One to Watch: Jimmy Durmaz

Formation: 4-4-2

Odds: +15000

Prediction: Fails to Reach the Round of 16

 

SOUTH KOREA

The Asian Tigers had a difficult time in the qualifying phase for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, showing a lot of weaknesses in their play. Likewise, they were beaten in both their recent friendly matches against Poland 3-2 and Northern Ireland 2-1, so the bookmakers consider them among the biggest underdogs to lift the World Cup Trophy in Russia. The price on South Korea to finish bottom of the group is at -120, while the bookies set the market on them to reach the second round at +250.

Although South Korea has plenty of problems with at the defensive line, they are a determined group of players with an exceptional teamwork who never give up, so the bettors shouldn’t write off the Asian Tigers, as they will certainly give their best to upset Mexico and Sweden here. South Korea’s attack is a way better than their defense, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they manage to score in each of their group-stage games, even against mighty Germany, so betting on the totals in Asian Tigers’ matches sounds like a logical choice.

The 25-year old skillful forward Son Heung-Min (63 caps, 20 goals) is the leader and the most gifted player in this South Korea team, while the captain Ki Sung-Yueng (99 caps, 10 goals) and Koo Ja-Cheol (65 caps, 19 goals) will be go-to-guys in the middle of the park. Asian Tigers prefer an attacking approach, mostly playing in a 4-3-3 system, but they also have potential to play with three at the back. A lot of things will depend on a current form, so the bettors should pay attention to South Korea’s games in Russia this summer.

Manager: Shin Tae-Yong

Star Player: Son Heung-Min

One to Watch: Koo Ja-Cheol

Formation: 4-3-3 or 3-4-3

Odds: +75000

Prediction: Fails to Reach the Round of 16

GROUP F GAMES

Date HOME AWAY 1 X 2 O/U 2.5 Goals
6/17/2018 Germany Mexico -225 +300 +700 -106/-118
6/18/2018 Sweden South Korea +105 +220 +280 +125/-163
6/23/2018 South Korea Mexico +275 +225 +105 +120/-154
6/23/2018 Germany Sweden -200 +300 +600 -125/+100
6/27/2018 South Korea Germany +1100 +400 -350 -154/+120
6/27/2018 Mexico Sweden +140 +220 +200 +120/-154

GROUP FORECAST

1st – Germany, 2nd– Mexico (+187)

1st – Germany, 2nd – Sweden (+225)

1st – Germany, 2nd – South Korea (+600)

Although the competition in the Group F is a tricky one, it seems like Germany will convincingly top the table, so the bettors can pick defending champions as certain entrants of the knock-out phase. The battle for the second place should be thrilling, but I’m backing Mexico to finish ahead of South Korea and Sweden due to an experience they possess, while the bettors can check out all available odds on BetDSI Sportsbook, as this group offers plenty of interesting markets.