Argentina backed to shine in the Ladbrokes News Verdict!
World Cup fever is gripping Ladbrokes Towers and to show you just how excited we are about the world’s greatest football tournament our News Team have delivered their final verdicts!
From hosts Brazil to European powerhouse Germany, members of the News.Ladbrokes team have picked out who they think will lift the famous trophy in South America.
And it’s 1978 and 1986 champions Argentina who have come out on top and get the Ladbrokes News vote!
Christian Crowther says: “Selecting the Brazilians to win their own World Cup may seem like a cop-out but I’m genuinely surprised my esteemed colleagues have ignored the hosts’ 3/1 favouritism.
“Yes, there is enormous expectation, and yes, this is not the most flamboyant band of Samba Boys ever assembled, but there was plenty of evidence at last summer’s Confederations Cup that ‘Big Phil’ Scolari can lead Neymar and co to his second World Cup triumph.
“Tellingly, current holders Spain were humbled 3-0 in that final and I really believe this will be a tournament too far for Los Rojos.
“No European nation has ever been victorious in the Americas and seeing as a third of World Cups were claimed by their respective hosts, expect a party to end all parties in Rio on July 13.
Matt Wiggins says: “Call me a follower of fashion, but in a South American World Cup I’m backing a home-continent side to prevail.
“Brazil haven’t been a World Cup power for eight years and contain enough of the squad that failed under the weight of expectation at the Olympics to have me thinking the pressure of pleasing their masses will be too great.
“Argentina have none of those worries and, along with a more favourable knockout route, possess a man in Lionel Messi who’ll be intent on knocking Cristiano Ronaldo off his perch.”
Sam Foster says: “After being forced to concede that any of the tournament’s big-four can win the criteria I have focused on most for the World Cup is value and that leads me to Spain.
“The reigning champions and European holders are probably not as confident as they were two and four years ago and that is reflected in quotes of 13/2, however, once they navigate their group there is a strong chance that swagger can return and suddenly their price becomes very appealing.
“The obvious concern is up front but several of their forwards, including Fernando Torres and David Villa, have excellent international records and it wouldn’t be a surprise if they left their domestic disappointment behind them.”
William Geldart says: “An easy group, a favourable travelling schedule and of course a stellar line-up make Argentina my pick to lift the trophy in Rio on July 13.
“Coach Alejandro Sabella’s exciting array of attacking talent, featuring the likes of Lionel Messi, Sergio Aguero and Gonzalo Higuain, scored a total of 35 goals in qualifying and should make mincemeat of their Group F opponents.
“Performing well in the group stage will provide a solid platform for the latter stages of the competition.
And while question marks remain over their goalkeeper and defence, La Albiceleste will look to take advantage of favourable South American conditions and the fact that arguably their main rivals, Brazil, could be burdened by the weight of expectation as hosts.”
Jack Beresford says: “Everyone is talking up Argentina but, for the best combination of price and pedigree, it has to be Germany.
“Die Mannschaft are a well-drilled football machine and have prepared meticulously for this tournament, with a specially-constructed state-of-the-art base of operations in Brazil.
“They’ve reached at least the last four in each of the previous two World Cups and European Championships and having seen veteran striker Miroslav Klose defy the critics and excel in Serie A with Lazio, his efforts, coupled with the ability of Thomas Muller and the rest should give them more than enough firepower to see off Brazil.”
Oliver Yew says: “Something tells me Lionel Messi is about to stand up and be counted for Argentina in Brazil!
“The World Cup is the missing piece in the Messi puzzle and he will be desperate to help his country to the coveted trophy and propel his name alongside the greats of the game.
Despite the Barcelona superstar’s brilliance, Argentina are not a one man band and with the likes of Sergio Aguero, Gonzalo Higuain and Angel di Maria in their ranks they boast one of the most frightening attacking line-ups in world football.
“And with the South American conditions and a relatively straight forward group also in their favour, Alejandro Sabella’s side will take a lot of stopping.”
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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