The draw has set up beautifully for one of the pre-tournament favorites as soccer betting picks, Argentina.
And we're not just talking about the knockout rounds. It started in the group stages, with Lionel Messi and company receiving one of the most favorable draws of the entire World Cup. They had to play Bosnia and Herzegovina, Nigeria and Iran, hardly the toughest of schedules.
In the end, Argentina proved too strong for the competition and Messi had his way, scoring four goals in helping his country to three wins out of three matches.
Looking ahead, the Argentinians will next face Switzerland in the Round of 16, a match they should win. They would then take on the winner of Belgium and USA in the quarter-finals. It's no wonder Argentina remains a strong contender at +430 in the soccer betting odds to win it all.
Questions remain though. The defense has looked shaky and that's putting it nicely, so there are certainly things that need to be addressed leading into the clash with the Swiss.
Oddsmakers have changed their tune when it comes to Netherlands and their chances of winning the World Cup. Right now you can find a price of +830, a far lower offering than what we were seeing before the tournament started.
To be fair, few could have predicted such a great showing out of the Dutch, who had the most dominant results in their group. They won all three of their matches (Spain, Australia, Chile), scoring 10 goals and allowing three in Group B.
Because of their impressive results, Netherlands finished as the top seed and was able to avoid Brazil in the Round of 16. Playing Mexico isn't going to be easy, but if they get through that test the Dutch would then face an easier fixture against the winner of Costa Rica and Greece in the quarter-finals. A likely date with Argentina would then loom in the semi-finals and that's a match the Dutch could easily win.
Netherlands controls their own destiny at the moment, and with the way Arjen Robben and Robin Van Persie have been playing, there's no doubt this is one of the most dangerous (and exciting) teams left in the World Cup.
Will Louis van Gaal's men keep their nerve or are we due for more upsets in the Round of 16?
Brazil, Germany, France Face Tough Paths
The Brazilians didn't have the toughest of draws in the group stage, but they have a fight on their hands now that we're entering the bracket round.
It starts with a date with Chile, who have looked to be a huge threat in the tournament so far. Should they get past the Chileans, Brazil would face the winner of Colombia and Uruguay in the last eight, before likely playing either Germany or France in the semi-finals. Not easy.
The Germans must focus in the Round of 16. Algeria hasn't been a punching bag whatsoever in this tournament and they could pose problems for Germany's rather immobile defensive line. If they win, Germany would take on either France or Nigeria, so no one will be able to say they didn't earn it should they make another deep run.
Then there's the French, who should be able to scoot past the Nigerians before probably having to encounter Germany. Will France continue their dominance in Brazil or fall short in the knockout stages?