The tilt between Portugal and Morocco will be played at the Luzhniki Arena in Moscow on June 20th. The Navigators are considered as strong favorites to get three points here, but the Atlas Lions are desperate to win following a heartbreaking loss to Iran in the dying moments of the clash.
Portugal vs. Morocco
Three-Way: 1: Portugal -152; X: +280 Draw; 2: Morocco +500 (Odds provided by Delaware Park Sportsbook)
Spread -1: Portugal +120; Morocco -143
Total 2.5 goals: Over +114; Under -154
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Portugal scored the fastest goal at the tournament as Ronaldo converted the penalty kick in the 4th minute against Spain, and then he beat the unlucky David de Gea at the stroke of the halftime to make it 2-1, while he also made happy all the punters who backed over 2.5 goals at excellent +129 odds.
Spain dominated in the second half and managed to score two and get a 3-2 lead, but Ronaldo’s master class and a fantastic free-kick in the 88th minute prevented the Red Fury from taking all three points, while he scored the first, and at the moment, the only hat-trick at the World Cup in Russia. A draw at +225 was a quite popular bet on this tilt, while both teams to score at +100 was certainly very appealing.
On the other hand, Morocco wasn’t that lucky in their opening game in the competition as they were the better side for the entire 90 minutes, but failed to score from several good opportunities, while Aziz Bouhaddouz put the ball into his own net in the 95th so Iran took three unexpected points. The Iranians beat the bookies with a win at +320, while the game expectedly went under 2.5 goals at -278, which wasn’t such a popular choice by the punters.
Players to watch
All eyes are on Ronaldo after a breathtaking performance in the first game, and he is the biggest favorite to win the Golden Boot award at +200, so he is expected to score at least one goal here. Morocco’s defense proved to be leaky at times in a tilt with Iran, and CR7 will surely show no mercy if the opportunity comes.
Hakim Ziyech didn’t enjoy the best of games against the Iranians, but he has the ability and quality to create problems for the Portuguese here. The Ajax’s attacking midfielder had a couple of key passes and one great shot from outside the box that went inches wide, so he could improve on this one.
Portugal: Patricio; Cedric, Fonte, Pepe, Guerreiro; Carvalho, Moutinho, Fernandes, Guedes, Silva; Ronaldo.
Morocco: Munir; Hakimi, Benatia, Saiss; Boussoufa, Ziyech, El Ahmadi, Harit; Belhanda, Amrabat, El Kaabi.
Portugal’s chances to win the World Cup can be found at +2200, while the Navigators are +110 to reach the quarter-finals. Morocco’s chances to lift the trophy in Russia are +20000, while the Atlas Lions are +5000 to make it to the quarter-finals.
Portugal’s win at -152 might not be attractive to the punters, who would not want to risk the stake, and backing them to win by more than one goal margin is a bit risky, so it seems that playing on the goals could be the best option on this one. Morocco must attack and try to score an early goal which will leave open space for Ronaldo and Portugal to hit them on the counter, but the Atlas Lions have the quality ion the attack to score, so I am backing both teams to find the net at +115.
The Pick: Both teams to score YES (+115)