World Cup Odds and Picks: Argentina Vs. Germany Predictions
by Nicholas Tolomeo - 7/2/2010
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The World Cup has been full of surprising results and unexpected performances from non-traditional soccer powers, but now that eight teams remain the marquee matches everyone expected to see in South Africa are coming to fruition.
The first of those matches begins Saturday at 10 a.m. EST in Cape Town when Germany and Argentina collide. Neither country has reached these quarterfinals by accident. Each has done it with authority and impressive performances. This matchup could easily be taking place July 11 – the date of the World Cup final match - with the entire world watching. These teams are that good.
After winning Group D, Germany blew past England, 4-1, in another collision of footballing powers. Argentina had little trouble in its Round of 16 game, dispatching Mexico, 3-1. Argentina’s World Cup voyage has been a thing of beauty. The level of soccer they are playing is on par with any team in the tournament. With a bevy of talented players on the roster, Diego Maradona’s squad has put on a clinic and they appear to be in top form.
Much has been made of the scoring drought of Lionel Messi. However, he has been the straw that has stirred the drink for this Argentina side. Maradona has him playing in the best possible situation, lined up behind two attackers. He has flourished in that role and he is making everyone else on the pitch better. The German plan of attack may as well begin and end with trying to limit with Messi can do.
The youth of the Germans has been a hot topic of conversation, but that inexperience hasn’t been a major factor in this World Cup. That issue, and the loss of star Michael Ballack, may have played a role in a head-scratching 1-0 loss to Serbia in group play. However, since then the German machine has outclassed older more experienced teams, including the 4-1 shellacking of England.
This meeting will by far be the stiffest challenge for both teams. The knock on Argentina is its back line defense. It was hardly put to the test in the group stage, but Mexico exposed some areas of concern in the Round of 16. If the defense remains vulnerable as it did against the Mexicans, then a group of strikers as talented as the Germans will surely find ways to convert.
Joachim Loew has crafted a near flawless offensive game plan for his team. It exploded for four goals twice already in this World Cup. Overall in this World Cup Germany has scored nine goals while Argentina has found the back of the net eight times. Goals will be a little bit harder to come by in this game and it may take only one to win it.
Argentina vs. Germany World Cup Odds:
Germany is an underdog for the second consecutive game. At a pick Argentine is -165 with Germany listed at +130. In three-way betting Argentina is +120, a draw is priced at +215 and Germany is +230. The total is 2.5 with the ‘over’ listed at +105 and the ‘under’ at -135. All lines apply for only regulation and injury time. Odds are courtesy of Bodog and Sports Interaction.
Argentina vs. Germany Picks and Predictions:
Argentina Will Win If: It shores things up along the back line. The Germans are the first team Argentina will play that can exploit even the slightest mix up in the back. Argentina has never trailed in this World Cup and doing so in an elimination game against the powerful Germans could be a recipe for disaster. The scoring opportunities will be there for Argentina, but it can ill afford to allow Germans to have the same opportunities.
Germany Will Win If: It strikes Argentina first. The youthful Germans need to take the game to Argentina immediately much like Mexico tried to do. The Argentine weakness is the defense and Germany needs to keep that defense working for 90 minutes. On defense Germany cannot be too preoccupied with Lionel Messi. He may be the best player on the planet but this World Cup has showed that the supporting cast around him could be just as deadly. The big advantage Germany has, and what could be the difference in this game, is their path to the quarterfinals. Playing two top-level teams in Ghana and England has Germany more prepared for this showdown than their opposition.
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