USA Portugal Pick Odds

284
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USA

vs.

Portugal

2014 World Cup

Preview

Prediction and Odds

The USA is back in action with their second Game in group play on Sunday, June 22 against Portugal. As expected, the United States are an underdog once again, and even more so against Portugal than they were against Ghana.

The Odds for this Game at 5 dimes sportsbook are:

USA +411

Portugal -129

Draw – +284

The big news in this Game is the status of Cristiano Ronaldo, who limped out of training Wednesday and was warned by his surgeon that he shouldn’t continue playing in the World Cup. That’ll definitely be something to keep an eye on before betting this Game.

For the USA, this is the best possible situation they could have hoped for entering the Tournament. They beat Ghana 2-1 and Portugal got dismantled 4-0 against Germany while self-destructing in the process. Portugal lost three starters: Pepe to a red card, Fabio Coentrao to injury and striker Hugo Almeida to injury. The loss of the two defenders is huge as both were starters on the Champions League-winning Real Madrid team, which just shows their quality.

However, the USA didn’t come away unscathed in their match, losing defender Matt Besler and forward Jozy Altidore to injuries. It’s likely neither will play in this match. For the most part, the loss of these two players wasn’t all that bad, as John Brooks (Besler’s replacement) scored the Game-winner against Ghana and Aron Johannsson did well up front in Altidore’s spot.

The main question for the United State in this Game will be how they defend Ballon d’Or winner (Player of the Year in all of soccer) Cristiano Ronaldo. He did close to nothing against Germany, but that was because the Germans dominated the Game. It’s unlikely that USA will dominate this Game.

As seen against Ghana, they don’t have the type of squad to dominate higher caliber teams, as most of their scoring chances will come off the counter attack. Portugal has playmakers on both wings in Ronaldo and Nani with experienced players in Joao Moutinho and Raul Meireles controlling the middle. The skill and speed of all Four of these players is going to be something USA has rarely seen. They won’t be able to over-defend Ronaldo’s side because Nani is just as lethal on the opposite.

The USA will get chances though like they did against Ghana. And the fact that Portugal’s defense is in disarray should help matters. The Portuguese only have six defenders on their World Cup roster and they just lost two of them.

Due to Ronaldo not being 100%, he’s not going to get back on defense, which should help the wingers and right/left backs of the United States. There will be room to roam on the attacking end for the USA.

The odds are a bit interesting due to Portugal’s collapse last Game and it wouldn’t be surprising if the United States kept this Game close throughout, if not won it. If they can play tight defense and create good chances from counter-attacking, the opportunity will be there.

Then again, Portugal will be in desperation mode because they are in close to a must-win situation if they want to advance. The last time Portugal was in a must-win, they topped Sweden 4-2 in a qualification playoff in which Ronaldo scored all Four goals.

Will the inexperienced back line of the United States be able to stop Ronaldo, who will definitely have more chances than the previous Game? Or will Ronaldo decide to take a surgeon’s advice and not risk his career by continuing in the World Cup?

Our Pick – We’re rooting for the USA and won’t make an official play on this Game. However, Portugal -129 would seem to have some value in this spot. Followed by the Draw at +284