Brazil are most likely to emerge out of Group E as the leader, but who will be with them in the next round is more of a toss up between the other three squads in the group. The first-time match between Costa Rica and Serbia this Sunday should make things a little clearer.
Betting Preview for the Costa Rica vs Serbia FIFA World Cup Group E Matchup on June 17 2018
Where: Cosmos Arena, Samara, Russia
When: Sunday, June 17, 8:00 AM ET
TV Broadcast: FOX
Betting on Costa Rica (+298 Price / +0.5 Spread)
Ranked 23rd in the world, Costa Rica will look to recapture the magic they had in 2014 when they somehow found themselves in the knockout stages after surviving a tough Group D that had England and Italy, who both did not make it to the round of 16. Most of their players that went to Brazil are back in the fold, and the experience they’ve accumulated since should help them in their quest of at least netting a win here in Russia. This match against the Serbians is likely Los Ticos’ best chance of achieving just that. The Costa Ricans are going to be bannered by several players who have at least 20 caps, including Keylor Navas, who is the team’s best player. Navas, who plays professionally for Real Madrid, is a stalwart between the sticks and had seven clean sheets under his name in the last La Liga campaign. With a fine goalie, anything can happen.
Betting on Serbia (-117 Price / -0.5 Spread)
When they get it together, the Serbians can be a team worthy of giving most other teams a run for their own money. They did got their acts together over the pasts few years, which is why they made it to Russia by topping their group in the qualifiers which had Austria, Ireland, and Wales. The Serbs have midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, who is capable of doing almost anything on the field. He had 12 goals and three assists in 33 appearances for Lazio in Serie A. He brings physicality and creativity, qualities that could certainly help Serbia. Forward Aleksandar Mitrovic is also eyeing to deal damage in the World Cup. He scored 12 goals in 15 games with Fulham on loan from Newcastle. Then there’s Nemanja Matic of Manchester United, who will act mostly as the main engine for Serbia’s attack from the midfield.
Serbia win, 1-0.
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