World Cup Soccer Betting: Portugal vs. Ghana

World Cup Soccer Betting:  Portugal vs. Ghana

Thursday World Cup action features a Group G matchup between Portugal and Ghana. Both teams are likely on their way out of the tournament and this game may mean more to the USA than either of these sides. Portugal has had a very disappointing tournament which began with an embarrassing 4-0 loss to Germany and continued with a last gasp tie against the USA. That lopsided loss to Germany all but killed Portugal’s goal differential which will make it difficult for them to advance even should they win here. Ghana is actually in better shape with the same record since they’ve only got a -1 goal differential.

Many soccer experts suggested before the World Cup began that Portugal could be a disappointment. The most frequent reason cited was their aging roster and whether or not that has been the reason they’ve certainly been disappointing. The only way that Portugal can advance is for the USA to lose to Germany and for them to beat Ghana badly enough that they overcome their -4 goal differential. That’s unlikely to happen and especially since Ghana has the same chance to advance *and* a more favorable goal differential. Cristiano Ronaldo hasn’t looked particularly good for Portugal though they will get key defender Pepe back in action after he missed the USA game due to a red card suspension.

Ghana’s overall play has improved at this World Cup and particularly on the defensive end–they’ve looked decent defensively against a couple of tough opponents in Germany and the USA. For this game, however, they’ll have to attack since goals are at a premium for both teams and neither will be served with a draw. If this game ends in a draw both Portugal and Ghana are eliminated so there’s a strong motivation for a wide open, high scoring game. In theory, Portugal has the superior playmaking talent but they haven’t looked like it so far in this tournament. The best bet is probably on the game to go ‘Over’ the total. Both teams need goals and neither can afford a draw. That suggests a wide open game with a lot of offense and little defense.