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2018 FIFA World Cup Opening Match Betting Preview & Free Expert Picks: Russia vs Saudi Arabia
Thursday, June 14, 2018
by Liev Jackson
2018 FIFA World Cup Opening Match Betting Preview & Free Expert Picks: Russia vs Saudi Arabia

Russia: 0-0-0
Saudi Arabia: 0-0-0
FIFA WC Group:
Group A
When: 
11:00 AM ET, Thursday, June 14, 2018
Where:
Olimpiyskiy Stadion Luzhniki, Moskva
TV:
FOX

Russia might be one of the weakest teams ever to play in a World Cup, with no obvious strengths. But they couldn’t have asked for a better draw as they hope to advance onto the next stage.

In 2017 they hosted the Confederations Cup and could not advance out of their group which included Portugal and Mexico. Their only win came against lowly New Zealand. Since Euro 2016 they’ve played 16 matches and won just six, none of which are against a team competing in this World Cup.

There is no obvious scoring star on this team with Fedor Smolov, probably the best of the bunch. But the defense has long been in question and that has only grown here with the retirement of Sergey Ignashevich and the Berezutski brothers along with long-term injuries to Georgi Dzhikiya and Viktor Vasin.

Saudi Arabia is making its first World Cup appearance in 12 years, edging out Australia for a spot in the tournament. This is a cohesive group of players with the majority of the team coming from the two best teams in the Saudi Premier League.

This is also a team with no proven track record in recent international play bowing out early in the 2011 and 2015 Asian Cups. They were a surprise team in 1994 getting to the round of 16. They qualified in 1998, 2002 and 2006 and went winless posting a 0-2-7 record.

Bovada Sportsbook currently have the Russia listed as -245 ML Favorites versus theSaudi Arabia, at +850 ML Undergod while the Draw is at +330.

Russia vs Saudi Arabia 2018 World Cup Matchup Odds & Betting Lines

Time Team
Spread
Moneyline
Total
11:00a Russia
ET Saudi Arabia
  Draw


Russia vs Saudi Arabia - 1st Half Line

Time Team
Spread
Moneyline
Total
11:00a Russia
ET Saudi Arabia
  Draw


More World Cup Game Odds & Props

The Bottom Line:
Russia is -245 favorites, Saudi Arabia +850 underdogs and the draw sits at +330. Neither of these teams inspire much confidence, but the home crowd is sure to give the locals a boost, especially if they score first. I think the nerves will be apparent though and we’re looking at a draw. The Pick: 1-1.

Liev Jackson World Cup Picks: Russia & Saudi Arabia Draw +335 & 2½ Under at Bovada Sportsbook

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Category

Tags
berezutski - fedor smolov - georgi dzhikiya - russia

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