Bookmaker's Corner: Betting on World Cup Soccer Props
by Richard Gardner | Bodog Sportsbook Manager - 5/15/2010
It’s only a matter of weeks until the 2010 World Cup kicks off in South Africa and the betting action has started to heat up on a number of fronts at Bodog.
One of our World Cup props that’s driving a ton of interest features our odds to win the Golden Shoe Award for top goal-scorer of the tournament. Past winners include Miroslav Klose, Ronaldo, Davor Šuker and Gary Lineker.
This year, the favorite to hit the back of the net the most is David Villa (9/1). The Valencia striker has 21 goals in La Liga this season and plays for the same country that won the 2008 European Championship.
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Spain is getting 15/4 odds to win the World Cup – the lowest of any nation – so it’s no surprise the players on its squad are expected to score a lot, since they’ll presumably play more games than most others.
Another Spaniard, Liverpool’s Fernando Torres, who had 18 goals in the EPL, is at 12/1 to score the most goals at the World Cup.
Some bettors are willing to roll the dice on the country as long as the player is scoring for his club side. Chelsea’s Didier Drogba, from the Ivory Coast, led the EPL with 29 goals this season. At 25/1, you’re getting a great player with a juicy payout. You just have to hope that Ivory Coast can somehow escape a very tough group that also features world powerhouses Brazil and Portugal.
Perhaps England’s Wayne Rooney (10/1) is a more prudent bet if you want to get behind a proven EPL scorer. Rooney finished second to Drogba with 26 goals for Manchester United, and while you don’t get such a good price, England should have far less of an issue emerging from its group.
Of course, we can’t talk about the top goal-scorers in the world without mentioning Argentina’s Lionel Messi, who ripped it up with Barcelona this year. Messi, the 2009 FIFA World Player of the Year, is getting 11/1 odds to win the Golden Shoe Award and nobody would be surprised if he led Argentina on a long tournament run.
As for long shots, one player that’s getting some action is Bayern Munich’s top scorer, Arjen Robben, (80/1) of the Netherlands. Robben is hardly a household name among casual sports fans, at least not compared to the superstars I mentioned above, so there could be some value there.
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