Image for Greg Lea Greg Lea - October 14, 2022

Argentina vs Venezuela World Cup Prediction, Odds, Picks

  • Argentina are safely through to Qatar and can begin planning for the tournament
  • Off-field issues have affected Venezuela, who are already out of the running
  • This should be a pretty comfortable match for Argentina on home soil

Argentina vs Venezuela Odds

Argentina Vs Venezuela 2022 03 24

Argentina vs Venezuela Pick

Back Argentina to win! (-130)

The Albiceleste are already through to the World Cup, but they will want to end their qualification campaign on a high in Buenos Aires.

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Argentina vs Venezuela Predictions

Argentina Can Begin Planning for 2022 World Cup in Qatar

The pressure is off Argentina. Despite having played one fewer game than every team below them in the South American qualification table, the Albiceleste have already booked a place at the 2022 World Cup.

They have a 14-point advantage over Peru, the highest-placed team currently outside the automatic qualification spots. A sense of positivity has returned to the national team again after a difficult few years.

Given the talent at their disposal, it is remarkable that Argentina had not won a trophy at senior level since 1993 until last year’s Copa America triumph. Their success in Brazil, which featured a standout tournament performance from Lionel Messi, is only part of Argentina’s rejuvenation.

They have been consistently excellent in this qualification process too, winning 10 and drawing five of their matches up to now.

It is fair to say that expectations were not particularly high when Lionel Scaloni took charge after the 2018 World Cup. That was a disastrous competition for Argentina, who only scraped through the group stage before losing 4-3 to France in the round of 16. Scaloni was handed the reins on a temporary basis at first, but the Argentine FA made a big call to appoint him on a full-time basis soon after. He has not disappointed.

Scaloni has made the team much more coherent. For the first time, Messi is performing better for his country than his club. There are still question marks around the defense, particularly when it comes to facing some of the strongest sides in the world, but unlike in 2018 Argentina is looking forward to this year’s World Cup with optimism rather than pessimism.

Venezuela Still Waiting To Make Their World Cup Debut

Nine of the 10 teams that belong to the Conmebol confederation have taken part in a World Cup. Venezuela is the exception. For a long time, soccer was not particularly popular in the country; baseball was long seen as the national sport – and it still might be.

In recent years, though, there has been some success in the global game. Venezuela finished fourth at the 2011 Copa America and did not lose a game in 90 minutes until the third-place play-off.

Six years later their Under-20 side reached the final of the World Cup for that age group, beating more established powers such as Germany, Mexico, Uruguay, and the United States along the way. A narrow 1-0 defeat by England in the final did not diminish the scale of their achievement.

Yet in the qualification process for the 2018 World Cup, Venezuela were disappointing. They finished bottom of the group, winning only two of their 18 matches. They also sit bottom of the standings this time around, although an improbable win on Friday could see them climb above Paraguay in ninth.

There has been a myriad of off-field issues for Venezuela to contend with. They pulled off a coup by persuading Jose Pekerman to take charge last year, though, and there is hope that la Vinotinto could make it to the 2026 World Cup, which will feature 48 teams rather than 32.

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Argentina Should Ease to a Comfortable Victory on Friday

Just because Argentina have already booked a place in Qatar, that does not mean they will take their foot off the gas.

Scaloni will want to finish the campaign unbeaten and with as many points to his team’s name as possible. The top spot is not quite out of reach yet, although Brazil are the heavy favorites to finish first thanks to a four-point advantage over their old rivals.

Argentina has duly named a strong squad for their last two qualifiers (after Venezuela, they will face Ecuador away next week). Alejandro Garnacho, a 17-year-old who plies his trade for Manchester United is a surprise inclusion, but there is plenty of experience in there too: Messi, Angel Di Maria, Nico Otamendi, Paulo Dybala, and Leandro Paredes, among others.

Venezuela have a rotten-away record in this campaign. They have lost each of their eight qualifiers on the road, including a 3-0 loss in Colombia, a 3-1 defeat in Bolivia, a 3-0 reverse in Chile, and a 4-1 thrashing in Uruguay.

We could see a similar scoreline on Friday when Argentina will be striving to put on a show in front of their fans in Buenos Aires. Back a home win and at least four goals.

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How to Watch Argentina vs Venezuela

Argentina vs Venezuela Information
Teams Argentina vs Venezuela
Location La Bombonera, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Time Friday 25 March 2022, 07.30 PM EST
How to watch fuboTV

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AUTHOR

Greg Lea

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Greg Lea is a freelance soccer journalist from London. He is the former editor of The Set Pieces, and has contributed to the Guardian, FourFourTwo, and ESPN. A Crystal Palace fan, he is a long-time subscriber to the belief that it's the taking part that counts. Email: [email protected]

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