Cristiano Ronaldo did not waste much time announcing his presence in Russia with an explosive performance right out of the gate against Spain that ended in a draw. Will Ronaldo go off again against the Moroccans? Or will the Lions of the Atlas score a huge upset victory that could dramatically change the dynamics in Group B?
Betting Preview for the Portugal vs Morocco FIFA World Cup Group B Matchup on June 20 2018
Where: Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow
When: Wednesday, June 20, 8:00AM EST
TV Broadcast: FOX Sports
Betting on Portugal (-165)
Cristiano Ronaldo was straight-up filthy in Portugal’s opening match, kicking off his tournament campaign with a hat trick in a 3-3 draw with Iberian neighbor Spain. Despite not coming away with a win, Portugal should be happy with the result, especially with the team only having possession of the ball 39 percent of the time. If it weren’t for Ronaldo, Portugal could be left still looking for its first point/s in Russia. What this means is that Portugal head coach Fernando Santos will have to ask other players not named Cristiano Ronaldo to chip in and contribute, particularly on offense where more creativity up front could benefit the team greatly. Portugal’s defensive line looked very much vulnerable against the Spanish side with Spain completing nearly 300 more passes than Ronaldo and company.
Betting on Morocco (+475)
Coming off a gut-wrenching loss to start their World Cup campaign, the Lions of the Atlas will need to have a short memory and forget the bitter 1-0 loss to Iran on Friday. The North African side was bound to get a point with a draw, but gave up a free-kick goal in extra time to Iran. Now, Morocco will have to find a way to neutralize Ronaldo. That’s a task easier said than done, but the Moroccans could certainly make life harder for Portugal’s attacker with their 4-2-3-1 formation. Medhi Benatia and Romain Saiss were fantastic in doing their roles in the midfield against Iran, and they will need to bring that kind of effectiveness and some more to the table against a deadlier side in the form of Portugal. On the attack, Morocco could eye taking advantage of a seemingly old Portugal back line composed of the likes of 35-year-old Pepe and 34-year-old Jose Fonte.
Portugal wins, 2-0.
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