Odds on Saudi Arabia to beat Russia – Betting Preview, World Cup 201811th June 2018 / lee
Russia v Saudi Arabia World Cup 2018, 13th June – 4.00 p.m
Russia are going to be feeling a lot of pressure in this match on Thursday, which is the curtain-raiser for the 2018 World Cup. This is the game that kicks off the summer tournament and punters are probably going to be having a decent look at the underdogs of Saudi Arabia to get something out of it as well. That is because Russia are just the third hosts of the World Cup ever to have not won a game in the calendar year of hosting.
Russia vs Saudi Arabia Odds*
Saudi Arabia 17/2
* (Betting Odds taken from June 10th, 2018 at 8:55 p.m.)
Can Saudi Arabia pull off a huge upset in the 2018 World Cup opener? They are trading as heavy underdogs for the game against Russia, but with the Russians not carrying any positive form at all, there may be an opportunity for one of those famous World Cup opening night upsets to happen. Saudi Arabia received a bit of a positive boost ahead of the tournament as they moved up above Russia in the FIFA world rankings leaving the Russians as the lowest ranked side of all 32 teams at this summer’s tournament.
Giving Saudi Arabia further heart is their results in a couple of recent friendly matches. They made both Italy and Germany work really hard to get results against them, losing both of those games against European giants 2-1. So there has to be positives that they can take away from those defeats. All of the pressure in this opening fixture will be on host nation Russia to deliver in front of their home support.
Can Russia handle the pressure?
Russia don’t look as if they really can handle a lot of pressure at the moment and Saudi Arabia will be taking on a side who haven’t won any of their last seven fixtures. Russia are only the third nation to have not won a single game in the year that they are hosting World Cup. It may not take much to break the Russians at the moment and a Saudi Arabia double chance is a 2/1 odds* (Betting Odds taken from June 10th, 2018 at 8:55 p.m.) for a bold proposition going into the game.
Mohammed Al-Sahlawi got the bulk of Saudi Arabia’s goals during World Cup qualification amassing a total of 16 as they finished runners-up behind Japan in their qualification group. That left Al-Sahlawi as the joint top goalscorer in World Cup qualification right up there alongside Poland’s Robert Lewandowski. So the thing you can take away from that is that if Saudi Arabia are going to cause an upset against Russia then he is likely the best candidate to get something on the board for the underdogs.
This is Saudi Arabia’s fifth World Cup appearance and they are going to have to put some poor form at the tournament behind them, as they have not having won a single game in any of their last three appearances. But on their first ever World Cup appearance which was in USA 1994, they caused a shock as they managed to get past the group stage and that is something that their opponents on Thursday have never managed (as Russia).
Spirited underdogs to cause an upset?
Overall the form of Saudi Arabia is really nothing to write home about having won only two of their last eight games and they will go to the World Cup having lost each of their last three fixtures. They took only two clean sheets in the run of games, which came in back-to-back wins in May over Algeria and Greece. But it will be fascinating to see if they can catch Russia cold in this one and the game is likely to be tight so under 2.5 goals is at 4/6 odds* (Betting Odds taken from June 10th, 2018 at 8:55 p.m.).
The match outright draw or Saudi Arabia double chance may appeal with the latter being a 2/1 odds option with bet365* (Betting Odds taken from June 10th, 2018 at 8:55 p.m.). Russia are without form and just think back to the 1998 World Cup when Senegal pulled off a shock win over holders France in the opening fixture of the tournament. Upsets do happen, so can Saudi Arabia right themselves to the history book and blow Group A wide open?
Russia v Saudi Arabia Predictions
Russia look as if they will be under a bit of pressure in this one especially given the occasion and the lack of form. Saudi Arabia have done all right in their buildup to the World Cup on the whole and look as if they could take something out of this fixture. There may be a shock on the cards and therefore a Saudi Arabia/draw double chance may appeal for this opener.
The tip is based on the personal opinion of the author. No success is guaranteed. Please gamble responsibly. 18+
* All mentioned odds were valid at the time of writing. Betting odds are subject to fluctuations. Please check the current odds with the respective bookmaker!