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Men’s Soccer Summer Olympic Gold Medal Final – Early Odds

Men’s Soccer Summer Olympic Gold Medal Final – Early Odds

The hope of an entire nation will be weighing down on Brazil in the 2016 men’s Olympic soccer tournament. The soccer-crazy country will be desperate for gold after a string of disappointing performances by its senior team. With superstar Neymar leading the charge, can the hosts reign supreme against the best under-23 players from around the globe?

Here’s a quick breakdown of the early odds for the top contenders in Olympic soccer, as well as a couple under-the-radar countries to consider. And for more Olympic coverage, check out our previews for the men’s basketball and men’s singles tennis tournaments.


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2016 Olympics Men’s Soccer Gold Medal Early Odds

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Brazil (EVEN)

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Despite being arguably the biggest soccer powerhouse in the world with a record five FIFA World Cups, Brazil has never won Olympic gold. They came close once again in 2012, but lost in the final to Mexico. After a shocking exit at the Copa America last month, Brazil could really do with a pick-me-up – like that first gold medal on home soil.

Neymar, who missed the Copa America for the express purpose of competing at the Olympics, will be tasked to deliver the goods. The Barcelona superstar will be one of the team’s three players over the age of 23. Goalkeeper Fernando Prass and midfielder Renato Augusto are the other two.

Paris Saint-Germain defender Marquinhos and Lazio midfielder Felipe Anderson will also join a very talented team that is the overwhelming favorite to finally claim the gold.

Argentina (+500)

Argentina is similarly in need of something to cheer for after another heart-breaking Copa America final defeat. However, the Albiceleste will not feature any over-aged players in the Olympics.

Nevertheless, this is still Argentina, and the Argentinians are still pretty good at soccer. Atletico Madrid striker Angel Correa and West Ham midfielder Manuel Lanzini are the Europe-based players who will headline this team. They will look to continue the country’s impressive run of winning a medal in the last three Olympic soccer tournaments it’s qualified in.

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Germany (+550)

World champion Germany won’t have too many household names on its Olympic team. Twins Lars and Sven Bender are perhaps the biggest, and they’re joined by striker Nils Petersen as the three over-aged players.

However, this team has the proud distinction of being the first one to qualify for the Olympic soccer tournament since the fall of the Berlin Wall. They also have the talent to deliver the country’s very first Olympic gold.

Borussia Dortmund defender Matthias Ginter already has nine senior caps to his name. Meanwhile, Leon Goretzka and Max Meyer, the latest top-quality products of the midfield factory known as Schalke, will provide some much-needed quality on offense.

Sleeper

Nigeria (+2,000)

After claiming gold in the 1996 Olympics and silver in 2008, don’t be the least bit surprised if the Nigerians win another medal in 2016. This group already has a pretty large feather on its cap, as it won the inaugural Aftrica U-23 Cup of Nations last year. 20-year-old Etebo Oghenekaro was outstanding in that tournament with five goals.

The Nigerians had a huge slice of luck by avoiding the big guns – Brazil, Argentina, and Germany – in the group stage. They should have every chance of topping a wide-open Group B, which also includes Sweden, Colombia, and Japan.

Long Shot

South Korea (+4,000)

For anyone looking for a possible long shot bet, try South Korea out for size. The South Koreans surprisingly won bronze in the 2012 Olympics in London. Meanwhile, this crop of youngsters is coming off a second-place finish in the AFC U-22 Championship held earlier this year.

The Asians should have the firepower to go deep in the tournament. Midfielders Kwon Chang-hoon and Lee Chang-min combined for nine goals in that U-22 tournament. Meanwhile, they used two of their three over-age players to take strikers Suk Hyun-jun (four goals in 10 appearances for the senior team) and Tottenham’s Son Heung-min (16 goals in 48 senior international caps) to Rio.

Writer’s Prediction

The big favorites falter, which leaves the door open for Nigeria (+2,000) to steal the gold.

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Brad
Written by Brad

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