International Round-Up: 08/06/18 – 10/06/18

International Round-Up: 08/06/18 – 10/06/18

International Round-Up 08/06/18 – 10/06/18

Germany v Saudi Arabia – 08/06/18

Germany

Germany’s final warmup game before the World Cup sees them host Saudi Arabia at the BayArena in Leverkusen. The reigning World Champions are tipped for major success again this Summer and are currently 2nd favourites for the tournament at 5/1 so will be looking to finish their preparations strongly with a win here.

The Germans sailed through their qualifying group, winning all 10 of their qualifiers and topping the group by a massive 11 points over Northern Ireland but haven’t won any of their 5 games since, including their disappointing 2-1 defeat to Austria last time out. Mesut Ozil’ goal was cancelled out by 2nd half strikes from Martin Hinteregger and Alessandro Schopf saw Joachim Low’ side beaten by their neighbours who haven’t even qualified for the tournament. A win here for Low and Germany is vital for them to take some confidence in to their opening group game with Mexico in just over a weeks time.

Leroy Sane’ omission from Germany’s final 23 man squad earlier in the week underlined the quality the squad has and they’ll be desperate to get a victory in front of their own fans before they head out to Russia. Midfielder Toni Kroos has rejoined the squad after being given extra time off due to Real Madrid’s Champions League win and is expected to start his first game since the final in Kiev. The last time these sides met was in the 2002 World Cup, with Germany recording a massive 8-0 victory and are massive favourites to return to winning ways here.

Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia were the surprise package in their Asian qualifying group for the World Cup. The Green Falcons finished in 2nd place behind Japan to gain automatic qualification for the tournament with 19 points from their 10 matches and finished ahead of World Cup regulars Australia on goal difference to avoid a playoff.

They’ve reshuffled their pack massively in their two warmup games with Italy and Peru where they were beaten 2-1 and 3-0 respectively. However they’re expected to return to their strongest lineup here ahead of facing hosts Russia in the opening game of the tournament on Thursday.

Juan Antonnio Pizzi’s side are entering their first World Cup since 2006 and will be looking to cause another shock in Russia. Their group, which includes Russia, Egypt and Uruguay isn’t the strongest so will be hoping that they can be the surprise package and sneak into the knockout stages but are more than likely are just going to make up the numbers in Russia. Like Peru and Italy before them, Germany should be too strong for the Green Falcons on Friday and could be in for a long night in Leverkusen.

Recommended Bets

Germany to win and BTTS (5/2 with Coral) – BET HERE

Mario Gomez to score last (11/4 with Betway) – BET HERE

Tunisia v Spain – 09/06/18

Tunisia

Tunisia face Spain at the Stadion FK in Krasnodar in both sides final warmup game ahead of the World Cup. Both Tunisia and Spain will be hoping that heading out to Russia early and playing there before the tournament starts will help them in their preparation for the tournament.

Tunisia are coming into their first World Cup since 2006 on the back of 9 games unbeaten and will be looking to spring a surprise or two when they go to Russia this Summer. They’ve been drawn in a group with both England and Belgium, as well as Panama so won’t be expected to make the knockout stages so won’t have any pressure on them. Their recent draw with European Champions Portugal, 2-2, and victory over Costa Rica, 1-0, will give them plenty of confidence heading into Group G however so don’t rule them out just yet.

They’ll be looking towards midfielder Wahbi Khazri to provide some magic against Juan Lopetegui’s side in Krasnodar on Saturday. Khazri had a productive season at Rennes, after being loaned out by Sunderland, with 9 goals in Ligue 1 so will be a massive part of any success for Tunisia on Saturday and in Russia. Like Belgium and England in their World Cup group, Spain should have too much for Tunisia so it should be a comfortable victory for the Spaniards.

Spain

Juan Lopetegui’s Spain travel to Russia to face Tunisia in their final warmup game. The Spaniards are one of the favourites for the tournament which their only victory was in 2010 so will be looking to regain the trophy this Summer.

Spain head into this clash in good form. They’re unbeaten since Euro 2016, where they were knocked out by Italy after a 2-0 defeat in the last 16 in a tournament which was massively disappointing for La Roja. Their last warmup friendly with Switzerland ended in a disappointing 1-1 draw, however Lopetegui used that game to make a few changes to the side and will more than likely return to a stronger lineup here ahead of their opening game with Portugal.

Spain’s Real Madrid stars are available for this one after being given extra time off after their Champions League win 2 weeks ago and the likes of Sergio Ramos, Isco and Daniel Carvajal will be key figures for Lopetegui’s side in Russia. Playmaker Isco got a hattrick in his last international appearance against Argentina back in March and will be looking to continue his form in a Spain shirt here. With the game taking place in Russia there will be a serious look from both sides in this one but Spain should have enough to see off Tunisia in this one.

Recommended Bets

Isco to score (13/8 with Betfair) – BET HERE

Spain -1 handicap (4/5 at Bet 365) – BET HERE

France v USA – 09/06/18

France

France host the USA in their final warmup game at the Groupama Stadium in Lyon on Saturday. Didier Deschamps’ French side are one of the favourites for the tournament and will be looking to win their first World Cup since 2002 and certainly have the squad to do so.

Les Blues’ preparation for the tournament could hardly have gone any better so far. Deschamps’ side have walked over both the Republic of Ireland (2-0) and Italy (3-1) in their two warmup friendlies so far and will be looking to make it three out of three with a win over the US on Saturday.

Deschmaps will likely rotate his lineup once again to give more players the chance to impress. Olivier Giroud’s set to start upfront and the Chelsea striker has been in impressive form for his country, scoring in both of his last two starts including the victory over the Republic of Ireland. He’ll be looking to continue his form with another goal so he can push for a starting spot in France’ opening group game with Australia.

Paul Pogba will also likely start once again and the Manchester United midfielder has something to prove heading into the tournament. Pogba was jeered by a number of his own fans after their victory against Italy last Friday and has been called to be dropped for the opening game of the tournament by a number of French fans so will want to bounce back with a fine performance here.

USA

Unlike the French, the US won’t be heading to Russia this Summer after failing to qualify from the Concacaf qualification group. The USA finished in 5th place on just 12 points in their 10 matches in what was a massively disappointing qualification campaign the US. That 5th place finish saw them finish behind the likes of Honduras and Panama which isn’t good enough for a side that reached the knockout stages of the last tournament in Brazil.

Interim boss Dara Sarachan has opted for a more youthful approach in order to get the US back on track ahead of future tournaments. The approach proved dividends after their 3-0 win over Bolivia at the end of May but looked 2nd best for much of the game in their 2-1 defeat to the Republic of Ireland last weekend, a side that were dominated by the French just a week earlier.

Sarachan’s inexperienced USA shouldn’t have enough to hold out the French on Saturday. The French have scored 12 goals in their last 5 matches and look relentless going forward at the moment so it could be a long night for a US side which doesn’t contain a player over the age of 30.

Recommended Bets

France to win and over 3.5 goals (17/10 with Ladbrookes) – BET HERE

Giroud to score first (3/1 with SkyBet) – BET HERE

Austria v Brazil – 10/06/18

Austria

Austria know they’re massive underdogs going into their friendly with Brazil at the Ernst-Happel-Stadion on Sunday. The Austrians unlike their opponents didn’t qualify for the World Cup this Summer after finishing 4th in their qualification group in what was a disappointing campaign.

Austria finished on 15 points after their 10 games behind Serbia, Republic of Ireland and Wales. In Euro 2016 Austria were some peoples dark horses with the likes of Bayern Munich’s David Alaba and West Ham star Marco Arnautovic amongst their ranks missing out on at least a playoff place would’ve been disappointing for Das Team and will be looking to bounce back for future tournaments.

Since their qualification exit, Austria have been in fine form however winning all five of their friendlies since qualification ended including unlikely victories over Uruguay and last Fridays 2-1 win over Germany. Goals from Martin Hinteregger and Alessandro Schopf turned the game around against the Germans and Franco Foda’s side will be out to cause another shock result here.

Brazil

The tournament favourites Brazil head into their final warmup game in fine form. The 4/1 World Cup favourites have won 5 of their last 6 matches, including their 2-0 victory in their friendly over Croatia last weekend.

Brazil have been revived under coach Tite and have improved massively defensively ahead of this Summer’s tournament. It’s now been 8 clean sheets in their last 10 matches which could be massive for them heading into Russia. Goalkeeper Allison is now rated as one of the Worlds most promising goalkeepers and has been linked to a move to Real Madrid and Liverpool this Summer and the with Dani Alves missing out die to injury, Danilo will provide more stability within the back line to stop everyone exploiting the space behind the backline.

Brazil were boosted by the return of star man Neymar in the game against Croatia, who announced his return with a goal. The PSG forward had been out with injury since February and Brazil’s talisman has returned just in time to lead his country in Russia.  The game against Austria will be vital for the Selecao to continue their momentum into the tournament and Neymar continuing his form will be vital for their chances of winning their 6th World Cup.

Recommended Bets

Neymar to score (5/6 with SkyBet) – BET HERE

Brazil to win to nil (31/20 with Coral) – BET HERE