Russia is dominating Group F and after winning all four games played so far, it is only fair to say that they are favorites to win the group. Portugal were credited with the first chance at finishing on top, but right now they are struggling to stay within striking distance from the leader while overtaking Israel.
Match: Portugal vs Russia
Odds: Unibet 2.00
The last four official games were disappointing to say the least as Portugal won just once against Azerbaijan and they need to rebound quickly. Missing the World Cup in a group featuring Israel, Northern Ireland and Luxembourg would be a disaster for coach Bento and his players. Right now they are tied for the second place but if they defeat Russia home, their chances of qualifying will be boosted.
The visitors have the upper hand as the two teams met six months ago and the Russians prevailed by one goal to none, but the overall head to head record favors the hosts. Portugal is highly motivated ahead of this game and will throw everything it’s got to secure victory, while Russia would gladly settle for a draw. Cristiano Ronaldo and Helder Postiga are the players that will feature upfront, with Postiga spearheading the offensive. The visitors will start with a 5-4-1 formation having Kerzhakov as the sole striker, but he is the leading scorer and a very dangerous player on the counterattack.
Another three months would pass before Portugal will play its next official game but if they fail to win at home with Russia, the outcome of that fixture won’t matter too much. Form is temporary but class is permanent and punters should mount the courage to back the hosts with Unibet at odds of 2.00.