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We are well into the second round of group games at World Cup 2022, and there is a particularly mouth-watering encounter to look forward to on Sunday as Spain face Germany.
We have previewed the day’s action by selecting some prop bets - a type of wager which looks beyond the final result - for all four matches.
The odds for November 27 have been supplied by the DraftKings sportsbook, where customers can get a $1000 deposit bonus by signing up with our link.
Japan’s victory over Germany on Wednesday blew Group E wide open. The Samurai Blue turned the game on its head in the second half, scoring twice to overturn a 1-0 deficit and celebrate a famous win that will live long in the memories of Japanese soccer fans.
Costa Rica’s opening encounter was considerably less enjoyable, as they went down 7-0 to Spain. Few expected los Ticos to avoid defeat by one of the leading contenders to win the World Cup, but the manner of the loss will have severely dented the players’ confidence.
Indeed, it is hard to see Costa Rica bouncing back from that shellacking in time for Sunday’s showdown. Back Japan to hold a lead at half-time - one they will probably maintain until the final whistle.
Belgium were not at all convincing in their 1-0 defeat of Canada last time out. Facing opponents who pressed high up the pitch and played with energy and dynamism, an aging Belgium side was made to look one-paced and predictable.
The fact the Red Devils found a way to win means they are top of Group F heading into the second round of fixtures, but they will need to improve their level of performance if they want to go far in this competition.
Fresh from holding Croatia to a goalless draw, Morocco will be obdurate opponents for Roberto Martinez’s men. This could be another low-scoring encounter, so both teams not to score is an attractive choice - and it covers both bases of an unimpressive Belgium being frustrated, and a blunt Morocco struggling to create chances.
Croatia looked flat in their opening game against Morocco. The current team is not exactly the same as the one which reached the World Cup final four years ago, but there was a notable lack of speed and tempo to their play. It was the sort of performance that suggests Croatia will not necessarily find it easy to reach the knockout phase.
Canada’s speed and movement could certainly cause them problems here, particularly if the aging Dejan Lovren starts at center-back once more.
Canada were wasteful in front of goal against Belgium, while Croatia struggled to fashion clear-cut chances in their draw with Morocco. Alas, this is unlikely to be a high-scoring classic.
Germany find themselves under huge pressure following that loss to Japan. Another defeat this weekend would send the Nationalelf crashing out of the World Cup in the group stage for a second consecutive tournament. That would be unthinkable for the four-time world champions.
A point would not be much good for Germany either, so they will have to take a risk or two if the score is still level after an hour or so. That should give Spain space in behind to attack, with Ferran Torres and Dani Olmo the likeliest candidates to exploit those gaps.
Torres scored twice against Costa Rica, including one from the penalty spot. That plus his quality from open play makes him a good pick to find the net here.
Dates: November 20 - December 18
How to Watch: Fox Sports, Telemundo, fuboTV
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]More info on Greg Lea
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