WC Top Scorer Picks & General Opinion

5 Jun

WCTrophy

Don’t expect a new winner in 2014

Now, I’m well into my 30’s age wise and, bar France’s home victory in 1998, cannot think of a World Cup won by a team who hadn’t won it before. Sure, there are teams – like Italy in 2006 – that weren’t expected to compete for the title yet ended up winning it, but the European Championships are more proficient in producing first-time winners.

So, while teams like Belgium and Chile could progress far in the tournament and should be entertaining to watch, particularly the latter, I wouldn’t bet on either – even e/w – to win the 2014 World Cup.

All in all, I think that Brazil are justifiable favourites to win international football’s biggest prize for a record sixth time. Of course, you can argue that it’s hard to judge a team who’ve played very few competitive games in the last couple of years, but ‘Big Phil’ is already proven at this level, his team looks balanced and Brazil were very impressive in destroying Spain at the 2013 Confederations Cup.

For many reasons, some advertising related, FIFA always want to see the host nation do well in tournaments and, with further public protests to come during the actual tournament, a Brazil wins suits all.

All in all, however, I’m not really interested in betting on the winner market, not at 3/1, and have instead focused on the top scorer market.

MessiArgentina

Messi has not been in good form

Messi (17/2) is the favourite in the World Cup Top Scorer market, but he’s spent a large part of the 2013/14 club season as either injured, out of form or a mixture of the two.

Sure, this could be Messi’s chance to shine and emulate Maradona’s feats of 1986, but unless the four-time World Player of the Year was deliberately shooting straight at the keeper in recent Barcelona matches, I’m not confident he’s in good enough form to back.

Neymar (12/1) is second favourite to top score in the World Cup, and I’m more inclined to back him over Messi. Indeed, whenever I watch a Brazil game he scores. Of course, given that they are tournament hosts – and considering that FIFA will want them to progress as far as possible, particularly given the negative publicity the protests will bring about – Brazil are likely to see most refereeing decisions go in their favour. Notably, Neymar – who you could argue goes to ground easily – is very adept at taking free kicks and penalties, and I think that he’s worth backing outright.

Now, I’ve long thought that Kun Aguero is one of the top three strikers in world football and wouldn’t be surprised if he sits near or atop the scorers chart in Brazil but, bar the aforementioned Neymar, I’m only backing players who’ll return decent value if only the place part wins (most bookies offer 1/4 odds), and Maradona’s son in law – at 16/1 – would only result in money back if he were to finish second, third or fourth in the final World Cup Top Scorer standings.

Higuain

Instead, priced at 22/1 each, I’ve opted to bet on another Argentine – Gonzalo Higuain – and a Brazilian – Fred – as my main picks to be World Cup 2014 Top Scorer.

Bar the prices, which allow for decent profit if one or both can finish in the top four, why?

Well, Higuain finished fifth in the 2010 World Cup scorers chart, has matured as a player since then, has had a tremendous goal-filled season with Napoli and, despite playing three games fewer, only scored one goal less than Messi in the qualifiers.

Fred

Fred, on the other hand, has been picked partly because I think that Brazil will at least progress to the semi-finals – therefore guaranteeing the maximum number of games – and want a Brazilian alternative to Neymar.

Bar Jo, Fred is Brazil’s only target man striker and will likely start every game. The Fluminense striker has been in good recent form domestically, will obviously have no problems dealing with the climate and – as tipped by myself – was (joint) top scorer in the 2013 Confederations Cup.

Anyway, good luck with your bets and thanks for reading. I’ll be posting further previews via www.tvbet.co.uk as of Monday 9th June, so keep an eye out for them!

Tournament Top Scorer recommendations (prices accurate as of 05/06/14:

Neymar (12/1)
Higuain e/w (22/1)
Fred e/w (22/1)

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2 Responses to “WC Top Scorer Picks & General Opinion”

  1. singhsingham27 June 13, 2014 at 7:17 am #

    Thanks for sharing this info. it was interesting.
    Man City Forever

    • JCLaLiga June 13, 2014 at 11:04 pm #

      No problem, and I like to see City do well too.

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