The Argentinians are favored at anywhere from -215 to as high as -280 at some sports betting sites. We can back Bosnia in the +700 to +800 range, with a draw quoted at roughly +375 at most places we've looked.
Filled to the brim with star attacking players, Argentina enters the World Cup as one of the biggest favorites to win the entire competition. As for the team's warm-ups prior, they had little trouble, beating Trinidad and Tobago 3-0, and then Slovenia (2-0) three days later, with both matches taking place at home. It was good to see the defense hold strong in both friendlies, considering that part of the pitch has been an issue for Argentina in the past.
Ranked number five in the FIFA world rankings, Argentina will do battle with Bosnia, and then will face off against Iran six days later. The following week, they'll close out the group stages against Nigeria. As you can see, it's one of the easier group draws out there, but either way, the Argentinians would be expected to advance regardless of who they were matched up with. We know about the likes of Martin Demichelis, Pablo Zabaleta and Javier Mascherano defensively, but Argentina is loaded with exceptional attacking players. It all starts of course with Messi, who will be the captain, and he's surrounded by the likes of Sergio Aguero, Angel Di Maria, Gonzalo Higuain and Ezequiel Lavezzi. The rest of Group F is in trouble.
Bosnia and Herzegovina
The Bosnians, ranked #21 in the world, took a different approach to their preparations for the World Cup, playing double the amount of friendlies than Argentina. After winning all four matches, they should be feeling good about their chances of advancing out of Group F alongside their Sunday opponents. Bosnia played a couple of U-21 teams to get some things ironed out, and then were really tested in their victories over Ivory Coast (2-1) and Mexico (1-0).
Let's run over the makeup of the squad to see who we should pay attention to all over the field. Asmir Begovic, who had a terrific season for Stoke City in the Premier League, will be in goal, while captain Emir Spahic will be at the heart of the defense for the side. Miralem Pjanic, Zvjezdan Misimovic and Senad Lulic should also have significant impacts in the tournament. That said, Bosnia's chances will directly relate to how Edin Dzeko's performs up front. He's provided a fantastic return for his country thus far, scoring 35 goals in 62 appearances. Can the powerful striker provide some more heroics in the World Cup?
World Cup Pick
Sometimes the first matches are tricky for the top favorites, and this could indeed be one of those occasions for Messi, and company. We really like what we've seen out of Bosnia when we've watched them, and they shouldn't be overlooked when making your soccer picks. Dzeko has been exceptional on the international level throughout his career and will try to make life miserable on the Argentinians. Still, we're not about to go against Argentina here, as their sheer attacking quality should be enough to push them over the edge. They'll be tested by a technically skilled, and well-disciplined Bosnia outfit, but we're still picking the favorites to get the three points.
Free Soccer Pick: Argentina 2 Bosnia 1