The final semifinal game in the World Cup will take place Wednesday and it’s a pretty good match-up, as England faces Crotatia. England is expected to advance, and are prohibitive favorites, checking in at +130 on the three-way line and they are getting 56% of the three-way wagers. Croatia is getting 31% of the action on the three-way line and have climbed slightly from +247 to +255. The draw is getting 13% of the wagers but has remained pretty steady at +205.
On the spread, England is -.25 at -109 and Croatia is -106 getting the .25 goals, where a $100 wager is split into two, so that somebody taking England wouldd have them England Even -109 for $50 and England -.5 at -109, while Croatia backers get them Even for $50 at -106 and +.5 goals for $50 at -106.
The total on the match has seen more than 85% of the wagers come in on the over, although that’s been the case in most of the knockout-round matches, as soccer bettors love to take the over. The game opened 2-over (-111) and has held pretty steady despite the lopsided action.
It’s hard not to like this Croatia team, who has done what it takes to win and didn’t let a late Russian goal get them down last time and won the game in penalty kicks. Still, you have to wonder how much they have left in the tank after a couple of emotional penalty kick victories. Having a few days off should help a little bit.
It’s been 52 years since the Three Lions reached the finals and if they want to return there they’ll have to figure out how to slow down Luka Modric, the heart of Soul of Croatia’s team, even if he isn’t highly revered in his own country. Modric has done an excellent job staying focused on soccer, knowing that he’ll likely have to face perjury charges after returning home.
England was expected to make it the final eight, possibly the semifinals, but they’re in pretty good shape to take the next step. I’d really like to take Croatia in this one, but am a little bit hesitant, as England can play defense and has the players who might be able to shut down Modric.
Croatia has shown a tendency to play games tight to the vest, and this one could easily be a 1-0 or 1-1 game at the end of regulation, so will go ahead and tab the under in this one.
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A pair of pushes last time out with our World Cup plays, so we’ll continue to plug along and now it’s time to get serious, as we’re down to the final four teams, and will look at the match between France and Belgium, in what should be an entertaining match between a couple of teams who have put the ball in the back of the net.
France is now the favorite to win the World Cup and Belgium will look to knock off the overall favorite for the second straight game, having defeated Brazil last time out, but France opened at +160 for this one and is now +150 as 46% of the wagers have come in on the Frenchmen. Belguim opened +205 and are now +200 after getting 41% of the wagers and the draw has inched up from +205 to +220. On the spread, France is -.25 at +110, so a $100 wager on France would give you France even for the 90 minutes of regulation and extra time at +110 and France -.5 goals for 90 minutes plus extra time at +110. Those willing to shop can find France even on the moneyline in the -130 range, so a draw at the end of regulation would be graded a push.
Bettors have been hitting the over pretty hard in this one, as the total opened 2.25-under (-119) and totals work the same way as sides when you see a .25 goals, although here, your wager on the total is split into two bets, with one at 2.0 goals and the other at 2.5 goals. With more than 85% of the bets on the over, the line has moved to 2.25-over (-112).
France is likely the better team, but the three-way line can be a bit of a killer, as a draw at the end of regulation sends your ticket to the losing pile. Even the spread wager of -.25 is a little tough to take, as a regulation draw would send you to an 0-1-1 record, so if you like France you’re better off betting the three-way line and taking the +150 than you are taking +110, as the regulation draw will leave you with a losing day regardless.
It’s tempting to take the over in this one, but with so much on the line, teams could be a little more defensively responible than they have been at times so far this tournament. I’ll play it a bit safe and take France on the moneyline here at -132, so a regulation draw will end up a push.
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