World Cup enters the final group round. Hosts Canada look to clinch top spot in Group A, all while China and Netherlands nip at their heels. Join us as we preview these matchups and serve up our soccer picks.
Netherlands +450 vs. Canada -150; Draw +260
Canada lead group A with four points behind a win in their group opener with China PR and a draw with a stoic New Zealand, who played well above their heads to give the host a run for their money. Nevertheless, thanks to China's 1-0 victory over the Netherlands in round 2, the hosts are still ahead of the pack. On the verge of a spot in the knockouts going into round 3 of World Cup group betting, but only with a win ensuring top spot.
The Netherlands won their group opener against New Zealand 1-0 but fell to China by the same score in round 2. As a result, they are tied with China in second place with three points. A win over Canada would propel them to the top of Women’s World Cup table and all but ensure advancement into the next round. How though depends on the result of the ensuing game between New Zealand and China PR. If China and the Netherlands win, they'll be level on points so it'll come down to goal differentials and head-to-heads.
Canada goes into round 3 as the distinct favourites to win outright at -150 soccer odds for the Women's World Cup, but that market stance stinks of bias. Granted they have home advantage and familiarity with the artificial surface being used at this event, but they are coming off a disappointing draw to New Zealand, a game in which they were highly fancied and had they won would have ensured their advancement. Buckling under the pressure so against the alleged group minnows after beating China in the opening round doesn't endorse their favourable odds. Now, the shine has come off of their win over China it's all up in the air with the hosts. That said they are undefeated in the competition and that counts for something.
By contrast, the Dutch won the match they were supposed to win against the Kiwis. Failure to China PR in round 2 can't be taken in a negative context because the Chinese women are an established Asian powerhouse in women's soccer. They might have been recently outdone by Japan, but don't let that take anything away from them and what they bring to this competition, which is a tradition of success. Plus the Chinese women were faced with a must-win situation in round 2 and they delivered to their credit.
As it is, it's our belief that the Dutch women are disingenuously priced at +450 soccer odds to win outright while the Canadians are overzealously priced at -150 to win outright. There's a lot at stake here and a stalemate isn't out of the question, which is priced at +260. Both sides will want to win this game, but they'll also not want to lose it either because that could mean elimination. Canada may be the popular soccer pick, but we're of the opinion that the best bet might be Holland to win or draw at +125.
Soccer Picks: Holland to win or draw at +125
China +105 vs. New Zealand +260; Draw +230
Group A is coming to a thrilling showdown between the three likely contenders to advance into the knockouts: China, Canada and Netherlands. China is in the enviable position of facing group minnows in their group A decider. Not to underestimate the New Zealanders, who've conducted themselves admirably in this competition and punched above their weight class. But it's a damn sight easier to advance a bid for the knockouts against an underdog than it is against a favourite.
The pressure is all on China to come through as the notional favourites at +105 in round 3 World Cup Group A betting. They rose to the occasion in game 2, showing their bounce-back-ability with a 1-0 win over Netherlands. At their tempting +105 soccer odds to win over New Zealand, we think they're the smart soccer pick.
Soccer Pick: China +105