We are coming towards the group stage of World Cup 2022, with Groups A and B set to reach a conclusion on Tuesday.
The USA face a must-win meeting with Iran, while there is a similarly high-stakes encounter between Ecuador and Senegal.
The odds for November 29 have been supplied by the DraftKings sportsbook, where up to $1250 in free bets are available.
Enner Valencia has already found the back of the net three times in this tournament. At the time of writing, he is the joint top-scorer (alongside Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, surprise surprise) at World Cups since the start of the 2018 edition - despite missing out four years ago.
Valencia is in the autumn of his career but the 33-year-old has rolled back the years in Qatar so far. Ecuador have impressed in all departments but without the former Everton and West Ham United striker, they would lack a ruthless streak inside the penalty area.
Valencia picked up a knock against the Netherlands but he looks set to start in this crunch clash on Tuesday. Back the frontman to continue his fantastic form as Ecuador seek a place in the round of 16.
The Netherlands have looked very ordinary so far this month. Their opening encounter against Senegal looked set to end in a stalemate before two late goals gave Louis van Gaal’s side all three points. A few days later, they were outplayed in a 1-1 draw with Senegal.
Had the Lions of Teranga triumphed in that match, the Netherlands could have had no complaints. They have played very functional soccer up to now, which is a disappointment given the country’s association with a free-flowing, attack-minded style of play.
Qatar are probably the weakest team in the competition, so the Netherlands will look to use this match as an opportunity to build up some confidence by winning handsomely. The hosts have been poor defensively up to now, so this should be a pretty straightforward assignment for the strong favorites with the best online sportsbooks.
As long as Wales do not beat England, a draw would be enough to send Iran through to the knockout phase of World Cup 2022. The USA do not have that luxury: only a win will do for Gregg Berhalter’s boys, who have drawn two out of two so far.
The USA did themselves proud in a 0-0 tie with England last time out. They were the better team on Friday, but a failure to find the back of the net has left them in this position. The Stars and Stripes are certainly capable of beating this Iran team, but it will not be easy.
Carlos Queiroz is a master at coaching defensive setups and the USA will find it difficult to penetrate their opponents’ backline. This is likely to be a tight and cagey encounter, especially in the opening 45 minutes.
England were underwhelming in the 0-0 draw with the USA, but they are nevertheless in a strong position to advance to the knockout phase. A draw would be enough to seal Gareth Southgate’s side’s place in the last 16; in fact, even a 3-0 defeat would suffice.
Only a win would guarantee the top spot in the group, however, so do not expect anything other than an England team going in search of all three points. The one positive from the USA game was that the defense stood up reasonably well, with Harry Maguire the standout performer.
Wales have not managed a goal from open play in 180 minutes of soccer up to now. Gareth Bale has been a peripheral figure and without their main man at the top of his game, Wales have struggled. They could draw a blank in this one.
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
© Rebel Penguin ApS 2023 (a subsidiary of Gaming Innovation Group Inc.)
We support responsible gambling. If you feel like you're losing control over your gambling experience, call 1-800-GAMBLER (NJ, PA, WV), 1-800-9-WITH-IT (IN), 1-800-BETS-OFF (IA), 1-800-522-4700 (NV), 1-800-522-4700 (CO, TN), 1-855-2CALLGA (IL), 1-800-270-7117 (MI).
WSN.com is registered with the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) under affiliate vendor ID 89744, with the Indiana Gaming Commission (IGC) under certificate of registration number SWR-000148, approved by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board as a gaming service provider, under certificate registration number 117656-1, possesses a Vendor Minor sports betting license from the Colorado Limited Gaming Control Commission (account number 94414163), granted a vendor registration number VR007603-20-001 by the Michigan Gaming Control Board, an interim Sports Wagering Supplier license, under license number SWS 066, issued by the West Virginia Lottery Commission, a sports betting vendor registration, under registration number #100400, issued by the Director of Gaming Licensing and Investigations of the Virginia Lottery to operate in the State of Virginia, and a Vendor Registration issued by the Sports Wagering Committee of the Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation.
Advertising disclosure: WSN contains links to online retailers on its website. When people click on our affiliate links and make purchases, WSN earns a commission from our partners, including ESPN and various sportsbooks.