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Russia vs. Portugal Predictions, Picks, Odds and Betting Preview – 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup

Russia vs. Portugal Predictions, Picks, Odds and Betting Preview – 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup

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Russia vs. Portugal Preview

Where: Otkrytiye Arena – Moscow, Russia

When: Wednesday, June 21, 2017, 11:00 AM ET

Line: Russia +270 vs. Portugal -114, tie +225; total: 2.5  – view all Confederations Cup lines

TV Broadcast: Fox Sports 1


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Betting on Russia (+270)

Russia’s Confederations Cup campaign is off to an excellent start after beating New Zealand, 2-0, in St. Petersburg on Saturday. Michael Boxall’s first-half own goal and Fedor Smolov’s 69th-minute strike were enough for the Russians to take all three points as they climbed to the top of the Group A standings. It was a remarkable performance by Russia who recorded their first-ever victory in this exclusive tournament.

They will look to tighten their grip on the top spot when they face Portugal this coming Wednesday. The Russian line-up is likely to differ little against the defending European champions with head coach Stanislav Cherchesov preferring a settled squad. For Russia to record another victory and book their place in the next round, it’s paramount that they dominate the aerial battles against Portugal. They have scored from a dead-ball situation in three consecutive warm-up matches leading up to this year’s Confederations Cup (against Belgium, Hungary and Chile). Centre-back Viktor Vasin is proving especially dangerous in set-pieces, with two goals scored in his last four outings.

Another guy who needs to step up for Russia in this critical clash is Smolov. He has been on fire over the past two years, scoring 55 goals in all competitions, including six for the national team. One of those six goals came in the victory against New Zealand, a close-range strike that all but sealed the win for the Russians.

Betting on Portugal (-114)

Portugal were held to a 2-2 draw by Mexico on Sunday, leaving them very hungry to get the full three points this time around against Russia. Manager Fernando Santos will look for a much better performance from his defense, however, who conceded a late equalizer from Hector Moreno in their group opener.

Russia may be tough, but the defending European champions should still have the advantage with Cristiano Ronaldo leading the charge. The four-time Ballon d’Or winner has 73 international goals in 140 career caps. Ronaldo set up Portugal’s opening goal against Mexico as he looks determined to put his ongoing tax issues behind him. Ronaldo and co. will need to be wary, though, of a Russian defense that looked solid in their opening group win against the Kiwis. In fact, the Russians have not conceded a goal in their three previous home games against Portugal.

Writer’s Prediction

Portugal (-114) edge past Russia, 2-1.

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Joel
Written by Joel

Sports Betting Tips, News, and Analysis