The first full day of World Cup 2022 action begins in Qatar with England taking on Iran in what looks a danger game for the Three Lions.
Check back daily for Betseeker’s free expert tips and predictions for each game of FIFA World Cup 2022.
England v Iran
Under pressure and out of form. England’s lead up campaign to the World Cup did not run smoothly for a team with so much hope.
The Three Lions are winless in their last six games, four of which they failed to score in.
Iran have not been plagued by the same issues, scoring in 19 of their last 20 games including goals against World Cup participants Uruguay and Senegal in September.
Grinding out low-scoring arm wrestles has been the story of qualification for Iran and they will undoubtedly head into their World Cup opener with the same tactic in mind.
With a host of English players rolling in from Premier League fixtures only a week ago, expect a fresher Iran to dictate terms and keep this clash to a low-scoring affair.
Iran Talisman Mehdi Taremi is the most consistent scorer in the Primeira Liga, finishing top 3 in scoring each of the past three seasons and on pace for another podium this season.
He is proven against the top players in the world with five goals from five matches this Champions League campaign and was Iran’s key man in the box throughout their AFC qualifying route.
Taremi will also be no stranger to the Qatari conditions after scoring 13 goals for Al-Gharafa in the 2018-19 QSL season.
Due to England’s heavy favouritism in the market, Taremi’s price is inflated but a player of his quality shouldn’t be $6.50 anytime against this weak of a centre back pairing.
Senegal v Netherlands
The Dutch are one of the form teams entering the World Cup, riding a 15-game unbeaten streak dating back to June 2021.
More recently they topped a Nations League group with five wins from six games against World Cup quality teams in Belgium, Poland and Wales.
Senegal are no pushovers with the likes of Edouard Mendy in goal and Kalidou Koulibaly leading the defensive unit. However the recent news of Sadio Mane’s withdrawal from the tournament will heavily impact their ability to score.
Mane led the Lions in scoring at the Africa Cup of Nations and has been one of the world’s most impactful playmakers at Liverpool and more recently Bayern Munich up until his injury.
There has been some support for the unders in this match since Mane’s injury announcement but that shouldn’t have much impact on the scoring form of the Dutch.
Throughout the Netherlands’ 15-game unbeaten streak, there have been an average of 3.5 goals per game in those fixtures.
The Oranje also have Louis Van Gaal back in charge and the experienced Dutch manager understands the importance of being relentless and the impact of goal difference.
Van Gaal’s previous World Cup campaign in charge saw his side pile on 10 goals in the 2014 group stage, topping the group with a +7 goal difference.
Posting big scores will be important in such a volatile group featuring the host nation and Van Gaal is no stranger to that importance.
If looking for a player to lead the dutch, Memphis Depay had more total goals and assists than other other player in the UEFA qualification.
Even with his form, $2.50 for an anytime goal is quite short but the $4.00 on offer for an assist looks a solid play for Depay.
USA v Wales
Both Wales and the US come in to the World Cup with inconsistent form behind them but a lot of pressure from their supporters.
While every team will feel the pressure, these sides both missed the previous World Cup (Wales actually missed the last 15) and will look to make a splash early.
History is on our side here with the USMNT never playing a goalless draw in 33 World Cup matches. They have also only kept two clean sheets in their last 27.
More recently on the Welsh side of this matchup, there has been an average of 2.8 goals in the last 11 matches involving Wales – with both sides scoring in all but two of those clashes.
Not only do both sides need to make a splash but there are certain players who will be out to impress on the biggest stage.
While Tyler Adams was given the armband for this tournament, Christian Pulisic is this side’s spiritual leader and will look to set the standard from the opening game.
Pulisic led the USA in goals throughout CONCACAF qualification, including a hat-trick which helped lock in their World Cup spot.
The American will be out to prove his doubters wrong after a slow start to the season at Chelsea, but previous World Cups have shown that club level form can often be thrown out the window when a player gets to wear their nation’s badge.