Prediction: Argentina vs Iceland

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Prediction: Argentina vs Iceland

Posted on June 15, 2018 by Harry Kettle

Prediction: Argentina win

Best Odds: 1/3

Bookmaker: bet365

The 2018 FIFA World Cup is here, and we’ve already had plenty of goals and drama to last us for a few days – but that isn’t how this tournament works. The games are coming thick and fast, and within 24 hours, the supposed group of death aka Group D will be underway. All four teams in the group will harbour realistic ambitions of reaching the knockout stages, and two of them, Argentina and Iceland, will square off in the opening round of fixtures in one of the biggest David vs Goliath encounters of the entire tournament.

Argentina

All of the talk prior to the tournament has been about Lionel Messi and whether or not he’s capable of carrying this lacklustre Argentina side all the way to the final once again. While we agree that they were poor in qualifying, people are quick to forget that none of that matters when it comes to something of this magnitude. The World Cup is the perfect stage for players to show up and be counted, and while they’ll struggle defensively, Argentina’s attacking forces will fill their fans with some optimism.

Team News

Caballero is set to start in goal whereas Higuain & Dybala will serve as Argentina’s firepower from the bench.

Iceland

Your reputation can often take you a long way in this game, but for Iceland, you have to wonder how well they’re dealing with it all. While they were able to qualify for the finals with relative ease in the UEFA section, they’ve really struggled to pick up any kind of momentum heading into Russia. We all know that their fanbase alone are able to carry them to a result, but in a game like this against a side as experienced as Argentina, there are some fearing the worst if they go behind to an early goal.

Team News

Gylfi Sigurdsson is expected to lead the line for Iceland, who have an extremely similar squad to the one they took to Euro 2016.

Factors to Consider

  • Argentina and Iceland have never played against one another in international football.
  • Iceland are without a win in four games with losses against Norway, Peru and Mexico.
  • Argentina have won four of their last six games, although their losses were 6-1 and 4-2 against Spain and Nigeria.
  • Iceland’s next game will be against Nigeria on Friday.
  • Argentina’s next game will be against Croatia on Thursday.

Conclusion

There’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that Iceland are coming to frustrate Argentina. They lack the kind of firepower necessary to compete with them up front, but from a defensive standpoint, parking the bus could be their best bet if they want to walk away from this with a point at the very least. We think that they’ll hold them to a goalless draw until the dying minutes of the game, only for Lionel Messi to pop up and give Argentina the three points that they so desperately need to gain some confidence.

Prediction: Argentina win

Best Odds: 1/3

Bookmaker: bet365

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