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Argentina vs. Mexico

World Cup Odds - Analysis - Preview

 6/27/10

Sunday's night-cap elimination match in Soccer City stadium couldn't be set up any better. CONCACAF power house, Mexico will be the underdog against CONMEBOL statistical giant, Argentina. The weather is forecasted to be clear with no chance of rain and a temperature of 50 degrees Fahrenheit at the 8:30 pm local time kick off.

Mexico has a had a very solid showing this cup, holding a 1-1-1 record with a key 2-0 win coming over 2006 runner-up, France. Most recently, Mexico suffered a 1-0 loss against Group A winner Uruguay. Their first match of this year's cup was a 1-1 draw against host nation South Africa on opening day. These results garnered Mexico a runner-up finish in group A. Although Mexico has a had good results thus far, they have run into perennial giant, Argentina in this round of 16 elimination match. Argentina has run a clean sweep in group play even with multiple starters resting in their last outing verse Greece. Behind coach Diego Maradona and newly appointed 23 year old captain, Lionel Messi, Argentina were able to beat Nigeria 1-0 in the opening match then executed a 4-1 trouncing of group B runner's up, South Korea in the second game. Messi is widely considered to be the best player in the world as of late and expect his full supporting cast to be present Sunday.

Statistically, Argentina is extremely dominant in this match up. The corner kick advantage is huge, 26-12 favoring Argentina and the total shots on goal is about the same, Argentina leads all teams this cup with 64 while Mexico is only at 37. As far as accuracy, Argentina is lethal with 30 shots on target for a 46.9% rate. Mexico has only had 12 on target shots this tournament equaling a 32.4% rate. Another big statistical edge is that Argentina has been called offside 6 times while Mexico has been called 12 times. However, This will be Argentina's biggest test so far and they aren't quite as cohesive on defense as they are on offense.

With Mexico constantly testing the offside call don't be surprised if they are able to successfully run on Argentina in isolation or 2 on 3 type situations creating good shot opportunities, possibly off a defensive clearance. Mexico boasts a 31% clearance completion rate.

Wagering odds for this match heavily favor Argentina as a -220 price in 3-way pools, Mexico will bring +600 for an outright win. Betting the draw for this game, which only counts regulation plus stoppage, will return +330. (Odds courtesy of Bodog.com) Argentina lays a full goal at -130 putting Mexico +1 at even money. Over/Under odds have been set at 2.5 goals with a +110 payout on the over and -140 for the under. Argentina's statistical edge is pretty overwhelming, even though -220 is a lot of chalk it does seem fair on paper. Considering a regulation draw is a push on the goal line, -130 seems very decent as well. If Mexico can score a goal the over will certainly hit for +110. With Argentina's potent offense and a Mexico team poised to strike on their untested defense, Over 2.5 at +110 is the better side for the total.

This is going to be a very entertaining game with everything at stake. Stateside it can be seen on ABC at 2:30 pm eastern, 11:30 pacific time. The vuvuzelas will be out in full force and a post game riot is not to be unexpected... Just a bit of humor, but in all seriousness, the national pride from these nations is going to be electric, this match is what futbol is all about.
 

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