Champions League

UCL Matchday 3 Betting Preview, Tuesday 23rd Octob...
UCL Matchday 3 Betting Preview, Tuesday 23rd October

Matchday 3 of Uefa Champions League gets underway in midweek and in this preview we focus on Tuesday’s matches including Manchester United v Juventus and Shakhtar Donetsk v Manchester City

Full Story

English Football

Arsenal v Leicester City, English Premier League B...
Arsenal v Leicester City, English Premier League Betting Preview

Monday night’s English Premier League football action sees Arsenal host Leicester City and the Gunners are bidding for a seventh straight victory

Full Story
EPL Football Betting Show 20th to 22nd October
EPL Football Betting Show 20th to 22nd October

Watch it live from 22:00 on Thursday 18th October as Brent and Chris look ahead to all of the weekends English Premier League action including Chelsea v Manchester United and West Ham v Spurs.

Full Story

South African Football

Absa Premiership 2018,19 Outright Betting Update, 9th October
Absa Premiership 2018,19 Outright Betting Update, 9th October

The Absa Premiership is currently on a break for international football and ahead of the return to action on 24th October, we take a look at the latest betting in the title race.

Full Story
Telkom Knockout 2018 Round 1 and Outright Betting Preview
Telkom Knockout 2018 Round 1 and Outright Betting Preview

The 2018 edition of the Telkom Knockout gets underway this weekend and we preview the Round 1 matches and take a look at the outright winner betting.

Full Story
Amazulu v Cape Town City, Telkom Knockout 2018 Betting Preview
Amazulu v Cape Town City, Telkom Knockout 2018 Betting Preview

The final action in Round 1 of the Telkom Knockout sees Amazulu host Cape Town City on Tuesday night and it looks an extremely difficult game to call.

Full Story

Horse Racing, Daily Best Bets

South African Horse Racing Tips, Fairview, Monday ...
South African Horse Racing Tips, Fairview, Monday 22nd October

Best bets and value tips for racing from Fairview on Monday 22nd October with selections provided by Winning Form as well as their back page tipster, Magic Tips.

Full Story
South African Horse Racing Tips, Greyville, Sunday...
South African Horse Racing Tips, Greyville, Sunday 21st October

Best bets and value tips for racing from Greyville on Sunday 21st October with selections provided by Winning Form as well as their back page tipster, Magic Tips.

Full Story

GFTG Forum Latest

More Topics »

Pin It

russia18World Cup 2018 kicks off on Thursday with a Group A clash between Russia and Saudi Arabia at the Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow.

 

 

Group A also includes Egypt and Uruguay and you can read our outright preview for this quartet here.

 

Russia:

As host nation Russia qualified automatically for these finals and hence their preparations have been restricted to friendly internationals and the 2017 Confederations Cup.

The Confed Cup, the trial run for these finals, saw Russia fail to make it beyond the group stage after a 2-0 win over New Zealand was followed by defeats to Portugal (1-0) and Mexico (2-1).

Perhaps of more concern is the recent form in friendly internationals. In October last year they drew 1-1 with Iran and a month later they lost 1-0 to Argentina and drew 3-3 with Spain. In March this year they lost 3-0 to Brazil and 3-1 to France and most recently they lost 1-0 to Austria and drew 1-1 with Turkey.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Igor Akinfeev (CSKA Moscow), Vladimir Gabulov (Club Brugge), Andrey Lunev (Zenit St Petersburg).

Defenders: Vladimir Granat, Fedor Kudryashov (both Rubin Kazan), Ilya Kutepov (Spartak Moscow), Andrey Semenov (Akhmat Grozny), Sergei Ignashevich, Mario Fernandes (both CSKA Moscow), Igor Smolnikov (Zenit St Petersburg).

Midfielders: Yuri Gazinskiy (Krasnodar), Alexsandr Golovin, Alan Dzagoev (both CSKA Moscow), Aleksandr Erokhin, Yuri Zhirkov, Daler Kuzyaev (all Zenit St Petersburg), Roman Zobnin, Alexsandr Samedov (both Spartak Moscow), Anton Miranchuk (Lokomotiv Moscow), Denis Cheryshev (Villarreal).

Forwards: Artem Dzyuba (Arsenal Tula), Aleksey Miranchuk (Lokomotiv Moscow), Fedor Smolov (Krasnodar).

 

Saudi Arabia:

Saudi Arabia finished second in one of two Asia qualifying groups, 1 point behind Japan after winning 6 of their 10 matches, scoring a total of 17 goals and conceding 10.

This is their first finals since 2006 when they earned just 1 point in the group stage and they are the outsiders of the 4 nations in this quartet.

As far as preparation matches are concerned Saudi have lost their last 3, going down 2-1 to Italy in May and earlier this month they were beaten 3-0 by Peru and 2-1 by Germany.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Mohammed Al Owais (Al Ahli), Yasser Al Mosailem (Al Ahli), Abdullah Al Mayouf (Al Hilal).

Defenders: Mansoor Al Harbi (Al Ahli), Yasser Al Shahrani (Al Hilal) Mohammed Al Breik (Al Hilal), Motaz Hawsawi (Al Ahli), Osama Hawsawi (Al Hilal), Omar Hawsawi (Al Nassr), Ali Al Bulaihi (Al Hilal).

Midfielders: Abdullah Al Khaibari (Al Shabab), Abdulmalek Al Khaibri (Al Hilal), Abdullah Otayf (Al Hilal), Taiseer Al Jassim (Al Ahli), Houssain Al Mogahwi (Al Ahli), Salman Al Faraj, Mohamed Kanno (both Al Hilal), Hattan Bahebri (Al Shabab), Salem Al Dawsari (Al Hilal), Yahya Al Shehri (Al Nassr), Fahad Al Muwallad (Al Ittihad).

Forwards: Mohammad Al Sahlawi (Al Nassr), Muhannad Assiri (Al Ahli).

 

Recent Head to Head

N/A

 

The Betting- Bet Now

Match Result:

Russia 9/20

Draw 32/10

Saudi Arabia 15/2

Note, odds quoted are an approximate average and are correct at the time of last update but are subject to change

 

Verdict:

All the pressure is on the home side after some indifferent friendly results sparked criticism of the coach and his team selection in the run up to these finals. Saudi will be an unknown quantity for many including myself and whether they are good enough to take advantage of any nerves or tension in the hosts camp is open to debate.

I’ll side with 2-3 goals in total, as much on gut feel as anything in an interesting opening contest.

 

Bets: Total goals 2-3 at 9/10

 

superbru logowww.superbru.com/worldcup_predictor/pool.php?p=11858911

Pool name: Goodforthegame

Pool code: eirebibs

Vouchers from WSB, 1st R500, 2nd R300, 3rd R200, 4-10 R100 and Yellow Cap R200

 

forumRemember you can have your own say on all this week’s matches on our discussion forum

 

*Note, every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the stats but errors may occur from time to time.